Georgia has deployed over 1,500 police and soldiers in upper Kodori Gorge, which indicates that Tbilisi is preparing for a military operation against Abkhazia, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on April 29.
“According to the information coming in, including from CIS peacekeepers in the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict zone, Georgia is sending weapons, fuel and lubricants, food and other technical means, as well as personnel of the Georgian armed forces to Upper Kodori; the total strength of army and police units in the Upper Kodori Gorge is over 1,500 people,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
It added: “Analysis of the structure of the armed forces present in this region leads to the conclusion that a bridgehead is being prepared for the launch of military operations against Abkhazia.”
The Georgian Foreign Ministry’s statement was made in response to remarks by the Russian Foreign Ministry's special envoy for relations with CIS countries, Valery Kenyakin, who, according to Russian media reports, said on April 25 that if Georgia started a military conflict in Abkhazia or South Ossetia, Russia would have to respond, “including through military means.”
The UN Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG), however, said on April 21 that it had found no evidence of a military build-up either in Kodori Gorge or on either side of the Abkhaz administrative border.
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