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Russian PM: Georgia joining North Atlantic Treaty Organisation will be a catastrophe
09 August 2018, 09:43 | Devin Moran
Georgian servicemen stand at attention during an opening ceremony of the NATO-led military exercises"Noble Partner 2018
"We want to recall the first military aggression, in Europe's post-war history, by a country against a sovereign state and the occupation of its territory that continues to this day". "And it is an absolute challenge", - said the Prime Minister, who, as President, sanctioned in 2008, the input units of the Russian 58th army in South Ossetia, and the outbreak of hostilities on Georgian territory.
The five-day war began when Georgia shelled separatists in South Ossetia, giving Russian forces a pretext to pour over the border and cement control of the two breakaway regions, which seceded in the 1990s.
During their joint appearance on Tuesday (7 August), the foreign ministers recalled the events of 7 August 2008, when Russian Federation carried out armed aggression against Georgia, resulting in more than 150,000 people having to leave their homes and over 400 dead Georgian soldiers.
Margvelashvili was speaking at a meeting with the foreign ministers of Poland, Lithuania, and Latvia in Tbilisi.
Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev has said that a awful conflict could emerge from Georgia's accession into the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation bloc and noted that there was no real justification of such risk. In March 2017, Visa Free Travel for short term stays entered into force for Georgian citizens.
Saakashvili said that Moscow was concerned because reforms had made the South Caucasus country a "role model" for others in the region.
The European Council President Donald Tusk wrote that the "EU is unwavering in its support" for Georgia's sovereignty and territorial integrity and for a peaceful resolution of the conflicts. He has warned against Georgia joining North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.
The Russian prime minister described NATO's eastward expansion as a major security threat to Russia.
While around 75% of Georgians said they were in favour of a possible Georgia's accession to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, 81% voiced support for European Union membership.
"10y since Russia's aggression against #Georgia. It [Russia] is a direct aggressor".
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