Author`s name Lyuba Lulko

Should Russia take down its flag in Abkhazia and South Ossetia?

In response to the call from the West and its satellites to revoke the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Russia should incorporate South Ossetia into the Russian Federation, for the benefit of the Ossetian people.

08.08.08: "Where the Russian flag was raised once, it should never be taken down."

The United States, Great Britain, France, Norway, Ireland, Estonia and Albania called on Russia to withdraw recognised independence from South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

The authors of the appeal referred to the decision made by the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights on January 21, 2021. The decision said that while exercising effective control over the Georgian regions, Russia is liable for serious violations of human rights, including the killing of civilians, torture of prisoners of war, inhuman and degrading behavior of people, for stopping Georgians from returning to their homes and failing to investigate human rights violations.

The authors noted that over the past few years, no international human rights monitoring structure has been granted unrestricted access to Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Noteworthy, human rights advocates always want to go there through Georgia, which is impossible.

"We welcome guests when they enter through the door. We invite Mrs. Angela Merkel through the door, not through the gardens,” said South Ossetian President Anatoly Bibilov, commenting on Merkel's visit to the Georgian village of Odzisi on the border with South Ossetia in 2018, when she used binoculars to examine the Russian army base located on the territory of the republic.

The statement from the G7 was made on the eve of the memorable date of 08.08.08. On August 8, 2008, the Georgian army, under the pretext of the need to restore constitutional order, attacked the capital of South Ossetia, killing civilians and Russian peacekeepers. Russia brought the troops into South Ossetia and ousted the Georgians from the republic. After the end of the hostilities, Moscow recognised the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

Russia also celebrated 08.08.08

A few days earlier, President Vladimir Putin approved a proposal to recognise dual citizenship with South Ossetia.

"To accept the proposal from the Russian Foreign Ministry, agreed with the interested federal executive bodies to sign an agreement between the Russian Federation and the Republic of South Ossetia on the settlement of issues of dual citizenship. To approve the draft agreement previously developed with the South Ossetian side," the document runs.

It is up to people, not policy-makers, to determine their identity

The right of peoples to self-identification is enshrined in the UN Charter, and it is up to people living in their territories to decide those questions for themselves. When the West recognised Kosovo's independence, no referendum was held in the province of Kosovo and Metohija. The decision was made in the parliament, which gave Albania an opportunity to snatch a piece of Serbian territory. Is it up to Albania to condemn Russia?

Other 'judges' are the countries that still have either colonies or puppet regimes in the 21st century.

Irresponsible appeal or provocation

Let's look at the appeal from the other side. Let us suppose that Russia has withdrawn recognition of independence. Would such a move cause both the Abkhazians and the Ossetians fall into the arms of the Georgians? No, the Georgians will rush to wash away the shame of defeat, and rivers of blood will be shed. The seven irresponsible countries should have voiced their call differently: "We want to see bloodshed and fire in the Caucasus."

"They are provocateurs. They do not want peace in this region," Senator from Crimea Sergei Tsekov told RIA Novosti on Thursday. The peoples of South Ossetia and Abkhazia have the right to self-identification, Russia will never withdraw the recognition of independence of those republics, he added.

The Russian Foreign Ministry needs to be more resolute

No one calls on the United States and France to withdraw their military contingents from Syria taking into consideration the fact that they are staying there illegally. One must urge the United States to withdraw the recognition of Kosovo (a number of African countries make such calls) and revoke the decision to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem.

An excellent decision would be to incorporate South Ossetia and Abkhazia in the Russian Federation — South Ossetia has expressed such a desire repeatedly.

Mikhail Aleksandrov, a senior researcher at the Center for Military-Political Studies of MGIMO, Doctor of Political Sciences, told Pravda.Ru that South Ossetia indeed wants to become part of Russia. Therefore, the question of why South Ossetia is not part of the Russian Federation should not exist per se.

The big political game affects the inhabitants of South Ossetia, who would like to unite with North Ossetia as part of the Russian Federation, the political scientist said.

Mikhail Aleksandrov noted that while the West is constantly attacking Russia, Russian officials simply fight off attacks.

"This is a losing diplomatic position. We have plenty of reasons to make such statements at the UN, for example, call for the withdrawal of American troops from Syria or urge Ukraine to abolish Russophobic laws … Why not? One should say something and spread the word. We should ask the European Union to take real action to end discrimination against the Russian population in the Baltic States. However, we are not doing anything," said the expert.

In conclusion, let us recall the quote by Nicholas I:

"Where the Russian flag was raised once, it should never be taken down."

Topics