West to Put Screws to Russia

New fury at Russia's formal recognition of breakaway states
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2008 2:25 AM CDT
Georgians rally in front of the Russian embassy to protest against the Kremlin's recognition of the breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.    (AP Photo/George Abdaladze)
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(Newser) – The West is preparing to crank up diplomatic pressure on Russia after its challenging move formally recognizing breakaway Ossetia and Abkhazia in the wake of its invasion of Georgia. The US, Europe and NATO have condemned the action, but Russia remains defiant. "We are not afraid of anything, including a new cold war," said Russian President Dmitri Medvedev after formally recognizing Georgia's restive states. "If Europeans want a worsening in relations, they will get it of course."

President Bush said the Russian action "exacerbates tensions and complicates diplomatic negotiations." British Foreign Secretary David Milliband announced he's holding talks today with Ukraine leaders "to ensure the widest possible coalition against Russian aggression." Georgia's president charged Russia with attempting "to militarily annex a sovereign nation," adding: "This a challenge to the entire world."