Russian troops have dismantled a checkpoint in the village of Perevi at the South Ossetian administrative border and moved back about 3 km deep inside the breakaway region at Singauri, EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia confirmed on December 12.
The village of Perevi is administratively part of the Sachkhere district and is located on the western part of the breakaway region’s boundary line. The Russian forces refused to remove its checkpoint from the village as part of the withdrawal from the adjacent areas, citing that the village was part of the former Autonomous District of South Ossetia. In late November Russian military commanders on the ground, however, said the Russian commission was working on defining South Ossetia’s exact border line and the decision on withdrawal depend on the conclusion of that commission.
“We very much welcome this move [withdrawal],” Hansjörg Haber, head of the EU Monitoring Mission, said in a statement. “The Russian forces in South Ossetia have for a long time refused to dismantle this checkpoint, in spite of clear evidence that it was situated to the west of the administrative boundary line of South Ossetia.”
“But the insistence of the EU Presidency and of the EUMM on the ground has borne fruit,” he added.