Friday, August 08, 2008

South Ossetia, Georgia and the Kosovo Precedent

Giles Elgood, at Reuters, raises the question today "Was South Ossetia's fate Sealed in Kosovo?"

When the Serbian province seceded from Belgrade in February, South Ossetia was quick to reassert its own claim to international recognition.

As a spokeswoman for separatist leader Eduard Kokoity told Reuters at the time: “The Kosovo precedent has driven us to more actively seek our rights.”

Those remarks will not have gone unheard in Tblisi and could well have added some urgency to Georgia’s desire to impose its rule over breakaway South Ossetia.

A similar, though more general question was raised on this blog in February.

When super powers support breakaway republics or enclaves, the implications of these endorsements are often felt around the world.

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