President Mikheil Saakashvili visiting one of the injured after the border operation. (IPN.)

TBILISI, DFWatch – Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili explains the deadly incident on the Russian border this week as an attempt at ‘testing the country’s readiness to fight’ and ‘a provocation’.

President Saakashvili visited the town Kvareli, which is close to the location where forces under his command a few days ago fought against an unknown ‘bearded’ militia. The president met with representatives of the Defense and Interior Ministry.

Saakashvili says he believes that the one behind the attack had several goals in his mind.

“One was to test our readiness to fight. Our forces haven’t been engaged in fighting of this scale since 2008, and the progress is clear, and I’m really happy about this. Their second goal was to provoke, and I think they failed.”

The president called the operation ‘very difficult’ and spoke about technical details.

“I have seen the entrance to the valley myself. As much policemen you send there they appear in more danger. Number has no importance. We used aviation, without pilots. It’s good that we have technical means,” he said, adding that many countries would have failed to conduct an operation of this quality.

Saakashvili expressed his condolences for the victims of the operation and thanked all officers, soldiers, special unit servants and policemen who were involved in the operation.

“Of course it is tragedy to me when three of our fighters die heroically. They were really good fighters. Shavnabada left Tskhinvali without loss in 2008 and here they lost two at the same time, which is a huge loss, because this is the best unit in Georgia.”

According to the latest information, two employees of the Interior Ministry and one from the Defense Ministry are dead, five are injured, while eleven corpses of armed units are already discovered. The Interior Ministry informs that the enemy militia probably consists of 20 men. Georgia continues its operation to find them.