TBILISI, DFWatch – Georgia continues its operation on the border with Russia, while a Chechen Islamic Internet news agency claims what really happened was that insurgents stumbled upon a group of Georgians and let them go, after which their location was revealed.
According to Georgia’s interior ministry, the first stage of the operation is finished, as the hostages have been released, but it also says that the operation continues.
Meanwhile, an islamist insurgent website writes that the clashes started after the location of a unit of militant recruits was disclosed.
“An information leak about the group’s route occurred at the last stage of the operation. Georgian authorities immediately sent a large number of their special forces backed by helicopters against the unit of the recruits,” the Kavkazcenter.com writes.
Georgia started negotiations with the insurgents and offered them to lay down their arms. Georgian authorities said that the appearance of an armed group on its territory was a provocation, which could be used by Russia as a pretext for a new military invasion of Georgia.
The insurgents refused to lay down their arms and called on the Georgian government to give them free passage to leave Georgian territory, which they had entered on their way to the destination site.
“After the negotiations stalled, a battle started,” Kavkazcenter.com (KC) writes. “KC sources denied Georgian reports that the Mujahideen squad took hostages from among the civilian Georgian population. On the contrary, it is because the recruits released five Georgians, whom they incidentally met on route, the leakage occurred followed by subsequent tragic events.”
By the latest information of Georgia’s Interior Ministry there are about 20 persons in a group of saboteurs. Eleven corpses of ‘boeviks’ are discovered. Operation continues to find and arrest the others. Two Interior Ministry and one Defense Ministry employees died, five are injured. Operation started late evening on Thursday.