Russian Troops Remain in Georgia

Medvedev backs seperatist regions
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 14, 2008 9:20 AM CDT
Russian soldiers point their guns to the Georgian troops on the outskirts of Gori, northwest of capital Tbilisi, Georgia, Thursday, Aug. 14, 2008.    (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)
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(Newser) – Russian troops are still occupying the Georgian city of Gori, and other cities beyond the South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions, as President Dmitri Medvedev declared today that his nation will stand behind the breakaway regions’ independence bids, CNN reports. Russia says will keep tanks in Gori for up to 3 days to help facilitate the handover of power, Bloomberg reports, but Georgia says Russia is actually building its military presence there.

“The Russians aren't leaving Gori,” said one Georgian minister. “They’re planting bombs.” Russian troops have returned to the port city of Porti, and AP cameramen spotted heavily-armed Russian peacekeeping troops in the western city of Zugdidi. Medvedev, meanwhile, met with leaders of the breakaway regions, and pledged on television to support their aspirations of independence.