TBILISI, DFWatch–The last few days, Russian soldiers have begun installing signs in the villages bordering with South Ossetia that warn locals not to pass, and are continuing installing fences and barbed wire.
The EU Monitoring Mission (EUMM) on Friday expressed concern over the actions of Russian soldiers.
“A patrol was sent to the Dirbi-Ghogheti area and observed the installation of red metal poles along an estimated 160-metre stretch of land, including barbed wire over a 35-metre stretch,” EUMM writes in a statement.
“Besides the resumption of the installation of fences, the Mission has also noted a recent intensification of the installation of sign posts in the area, some of them in the middle of cultivated land.”
The EUMM will continue patrolling the area and facilitating the exchange information among parties through the Hotline, EUMM head Toivo Klaar said.
“As winter is approaching, we call on all parties to take into account the potential impact on people’s livelihood and resources and on their ability to sustain themselves during this difficult time of the year,” he said.
NATO envoy for Caucasus and Central Asia James Appathurai wrote on his Facebook page that the actions are a violation of Russia’s international commitments and should be stopped and reversed.
“This will only further complicate the lives of people whose freedom of movement, and often their livelihoods, are arbitrarily cut off,” Appathurai wrote.