Russia Keeps Troops in Poti

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 23, 2008 10:35 AM CDT
Russian soldiers dig in just outside the city.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Russia says it will continue to patrol the key Black Sea port of Poti despite Western demands that it pull back to pre-conflict positions, Reuters reports. A Russian general said troops will continue "peacekeeping" operations there even though the city falls outside the perimeter agreed upon in the recent cease-fire.

“Should we sit behind the fence?" he asked. "What use would we be then? They will drive around in Hummers, move munitions around in trucks, and are we supposed to just count them?” Georgia and its allies fear Russian “security zones” in the country will strangle commerce and communication with the West.