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Georgia Asks EU To Oppose Russia-South Ossetia Pact

Georgia's prime minister has urged the European Union to strongly oppose a treaty that would tighten Russia's ties with Georgia's breakaway South Ossetia region.

Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili's office said he delivered the message in a meeting with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini in Latvian capital, Riga, on January 9.

It said Garibashvili stressed "the importance" of the EU leadership's taking "clear position" oppositing the planned treaty.

Russia recognized South Ossetia as an independent nation after fighting a five-day war with Georgia over the region in 2008.

South Ossetia's Russian-backed de facto leader, Leonid Tibilov, has said Russia and South Ossetia will sign pact strengthening ties in the coming months.

Russia signed an "alliance and strategic partnership" treaty with Georgia's another breakaway region, Abkhazia, in November.

Garibashvili's office said the main topics of discussion at his meeting with Mogherini were "Georgia-EU relations, effective implementation of visa liberalization action plan and threats to Georgia’s territorial integrity."

Based on reporting by and Interfax