Russia’s large-scale artillery drills ongoing in North Caucasus and in breakaway South Ossetia is “yet another destructive step” directed against Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, the Georgian Foreign Ministry said on December 6.
Russia’s Defense Ministry said on December 5 that over 1,000 artillery servicemen from the 58th Army of the Southern Military District and about 200 units of military hardware are involved in military exercises launched at six firing ranges in various parts of the North Caucasus region, as well as in South Ossetia.
The Russian Defense Ministry said that the drills are focused on training in use of Zoopark-1 artillery locating radar systems, as well as Msta-S self-propelled 152 mm howitzers and Tornado-G multiple launch rocket systems.
In the statement the Georgian Foreign Ministry expressed concern over these exercises and said that represents violation of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as commitments undertaken by Russia under August, 2008 ceasefire agreement.
“It poses threat to peace and security in the region,” said the Georgian Foreign Ministry and called on Russia “to withdraw its troops from the Georgian territories and to de-occupy Georgia’s regions.”
It called on the international community “to react adequately on Russian Federation’s yet another destructive step and not to allow further actions directed against Georgian sovereignty and territorial integrity.”