Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and the leaders of Georgia's breakaway regions – South Ossetia and Abkhazia – signed treaties of friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance in Moscow on Wednesday.
"The just-signed treaties stipulate that our countries shall betake joint necessary measures to eliminate the threat to peace, address problems in this sphere and resist acts of aggression," Itar-Tass news agency quoted Medvedev as saying at the Kremlin after the signing ceremony.
Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev(C), the president of Georgia's breakaway region of Abkhazia Sergei Bagapsh(L) and Eduard Kokoity , the leader of South Ossetia shake hands during the signing ceremony in Moscow, Russia, September 17, 2008. Russia signed treaties of friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance with Abkhazia and South Ossetia on Wednesday. [Xinhua Photo]
Russia, Abkhazia and South Ossetia "will give each other all necessary support, including military," Medvedev was quoted as saying.
Moscow recognized the self-proclaimed independence of the Georgian breakaway regions last month, following a five-day war with Tbilisi.
Georgia on August 7 attacked South Ossetia in an attempt to retake control of the region. Russia sent in troops the next day and defeated the Georgian forces.
A joint peacekeeping contingent composed of Russian, Georgian and South Ossetian troops had been patrolling the conflict zone between Georgia and South Ossetia since 1992 when South Ossetia won de-facto independence after defeating Georgia in a bloody war.
Abkhazia also broke from central Georgian rule in the early 1990s following the collapse of the former Soviet Union.
Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev (1st, L), signs treaties with Eduard Kokoity (1st, R), the leader of South Ossetia during the signing ceremony in Moscow, Russia, September 17, 2008. [Xinhua Photo]
(Xinhua News Agency September 18, 2008)