Comment of the Press and Information Department to a question of the News-Georgia Agency concerning the statements of the Russian Authorities
Question: How would you assess the statements made by high-ranking Russian officials that Georgia carried out genocide against the Ossetian people?
Answer: First of all we would like to express our deep regret over the civilian casualties and convey our condolences to their families. Georgia considers as equally painful the tragedy of each person, irrespective of their ethnic origin.
Civilian casualties came as a direct consequence of the military actions conducted by Russian military troops on the territory of Georgia. It is the totally unjustifiable mass bombardments and artillery fire used by Russian armed forces in Tskhinvali and its adjacent territories that have claimed the lives of children, women and elderly people.
Russian servicemen guided by orders from their command and in complete disregard for all norms of international law are deliberately and consciously committing war crimes slaughtering unprotected civilians with their characteristic cold-blooded brutality. The city of Tskhinvali was flattened to ruins just like Grozny was destroyed a few years ago. Particularly cynical is the fact that the Russian Federation carries out such barbaric acts on the pretext of protecting its own citizens.
Despite the Russian President's pledge on the completion of the military operation, the Russian armed forces are still continuing active military actions against the peaceful population of Georgia. The Georgian Government and armed forces are taking necessary measures in order to prevent full occupation of Georgia and genocide of the population and overthrow of the democratically elected government as planned by Moscow.
We call on the international community to give a respective legal assessment to the genocide of the Georgian people conducted by the Russian Federation and render assistance to the Georgian Authorities in preventing the humanitarian catastrophe resulting from the Russian Federation’s undeclared war against Georgia and in eliminating its disastrous consequences.