Observers monitor Georgia-Russia ceasefire

Observers monitor Georgia-Russia ceasefire

EU observers, including four Irish personnel, will begin monitoring a ceasefire between Georgia and Russia in the former Soviet state today.

In August, Russian troops entered Georgia to thwart Tbilisi-backed forces trying to regain control of the South Ossetia region from pro-Moscow separatists.

The five-day Russian offensive strained diplomatic relations between Russia and the US to a level not seen since the Cold War era.

The Irish contingent in the 200-member group will comprise two retired Defence Forces personnel, an academic and a Russian-speaking expert on the region.

The mission, which was agreed between EU presidents France and Russia, has a budget of €35m and a year-long timeframe.

A total of 22 EU member states contributed personnel to the mission.

A member of Ireland’s Rapid Response Corps was deployed to Georgia last month to work as a logistics officer with NGOs.

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