MOSCOW, August 8. /TASS/. Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council Dmitry Medvedev has described the events in Abkhazia and South Ossetia of 12 years ago “when Russia responded to the criminal behavior of the then president of Georgia” as “essentially a declaration of war on the Russian Federation.”
“Russia responded to the actions of those scoundrels who issued the order to open fire on civilians’ homes, on defenseless senior citizens and children, Russian peacekeepers who ensured peace and security, including for residents of Georgian villages,” Medvedev, who was at that time the Russian President, noted on his VKontakte page.
“That was why I made a tough, but the only possible decision – to defend Abkhazia and South Ossetia, first shielding them from aggression and then, at the request of their citizens, recognizing their full independence. Otherwise, South Caucasus would have turned into a powder keg, and that would be absolutely unacceptable for Russia, which has always favored lasting peace in neighboring countries,” he stressed.
According to Medvedev, Russia has always advocated peace and stability in the countries bordering it.” “Each of our decisions and actions stemmed from that absolutely sincere desire. At the same time, Russia, and one has to understand that, will never allow anyone to attack our citizens, wherever it happens. Our response will always be proportionate to the circumstances in order to ensure stability and security both in our country and the world over,” he noted.
On August 8, 2008, Georgia mounted an overnight armed attack against South Ossetia. Russia intervened to protect civilians and its peacekeepers. In the five-day armed clash, more than one thousand people, including 72 Russian peacekeepers, lost their lives. On August 26, 2008, Russia recognized the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.