Russia must stop blocking Georgia monitors


 A senior U.S. diplomat said Russia must stop blocking international monitors from going into Georgia’s separatist South Ossetia region to assess reports of human rights abuses. The monitors have been unable to return to the Moscow-backed region since a war in August between Russia and Georgia, and human rights groups say that in their absence ethnic Georgians are being harassed by the separatists.
"There is, unfortunately, a silence and darkness with respect to the international monitors that has descended on South Ossetia," U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried told reporters at a security conference in Helsinki. "The solution is hardly to keep monitors out of South Ossetia … Russia has an obligation, since it controls this territory, to let in international observers."
source Reuters

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