EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM) said it has intensified patrols in the areas adjacent to breakaway regions’ administrative border on the eve of the last August war’s anniversary.
“So far, despite the heightened tension and claims of incidents, the overall situation remains broadly calm. We very much trust that all parties will continue their efforts to maintain this position,” EUMM said in a statement on August 6.
It again called on all the parties to refrain from “any words or actions that could be misunderstood or misinterpreted” and to raise any issues of concern in frames of incident prevention and response mechanism.
“We stand ready to facilitate further meetings between the parties as necessary. We are also willing to examine further evidence if given access across the administrative boundary lines to do so,” EUMM said.
OSCE Chairperson-in-Office and Greek Foreign Minister, Dora Bakoyannis, also called on the parties on August 6 to refrain from “actions and statements that could destabilize the situation further.”
“Almost a year after the beginning of the conflict, we are facing a highly sensitive time,” she said in a statement. “Wounds are still raw, and the region remains fragile and volatile.”
OSCE had to close its mission in Georgia in late June, after Russia vetoed extension of its mandate. Bakoyannis said that the Greek “status-neutral proposal” for renewal of the mission “remains on the table.”
“We remain focused on finding a solution that would enable the OSCE to have a strong presence in Georgia, and we hope that despite the difficulties so far, we will be able to find consensus on a format for such work,” Bakoyannis said.