Today at a press conference in St. Petersburg, Federation Council speakerSergey Mironov dismissed the possibility that Georgia could eliminatecriminal gangs and terrorists from its territories without outside help. Hestressed that the latest operation conducted by Georgian internal troopshad given rise to a lot of questions amid the controversial statements ofGeorgian authorities regarding the situation in the Pankisi Gorge. At thesame time Mironov believes that the Georgian President has taken awell-balanced and pragmatic stance on his country's membership in theCommonwealth of Independent States (CIS). "The CIS does not force itsmembers. Moreover, Russia grants various privileges to CIS members, forexample preferential terms of supplying energy products," he said."If they want to slam the door, they will pinch their fingers," theFederation Council head said in response to questions about Georgia'spotential withdrawal from the CIS..
By summer, the Russian army may break through Ukrainian defences, reach Odessa and liberate Transnistria. The West will only “condemn” Russia's actions and continue supporting Chisinau in words