NATO calls on Russia to reverse recognition of breakaway regions

Other News Materials 27 August 2008 17:52 (UTC +04:00)

NATO's 26 member states on Wednesday called on Russia to reverse its recognition of the independence of two breakaway Georgian regions, warning Moscow that Georgia's security and stability were "important" to the alliance, reported dpa.

The North Atlantic Council, which brings together the ambassadors of NATO's 26 member states, "condemns the decision of the Russian Federation to extend recognition to the South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions of Georgia and calls upon Russia to reverse its decision," a statement from NATO's Brussels HQ said.

"Russia's decision violates the many UN Security Council resolutions it has endorsed regarding Georgia's territorial integrity, and is inconsistent with the fundamental OSCE principles on which stability in Europe is based," the statement said.

On Tuesday, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev recognized the independence of the two breakaway regions where Russia and Georgia fought a brief war in mid-August.

Following his move, Medvedev issued a thinly veiled call for Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to resign in a letter to the Wednesday edition of the London-based Financial Times.

But the NATO ambassadors stressed that "Georgia's recovery, security and stability are important to the alliance," in an apparent warning to Moscow not to try and destabilize the country.

"Russia's actions have called into question its commitment to peace and security in the Caucasus ... NATO calls on Russia to respect Georgia's territorial integrity," the statement said.