Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said that Russia’s actions during the August events were “absolutely legal.”
“They are in full compliance with international law, with our peacekeeping commitments; that cannot be said about Tbilisi’s regime, which crossed out previously existing agreements in a blink of an eye and led regional peace to the verge of a catastrophe,” Medvedev said on October 1.
The Russian president was speaking in the Kremlin, where he awarded Russian soldiers who served in the August war.
Medvedev said that Russia had a choice of either doing nothing or responding harshly to “the aggressor.”
“We chose the second option and we were right,” he said. “During this time we demonstrated that Russia is a state that can defend its citizens and whose opinions should be taken into consideration by various countries, including by those that protect themselves by making friends with greater states.”
The Russian president stressed if required Russia would defend its interests “by various means.” He claimed the August events had changed the world.
He said that Moscow would continue supporting breakaway Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
“We will do our best to make a peaceful life for the two new states, South Ossetia and Abkhazia, [and ensure] stability – this is our obligation,” Medvedev added.