Republic of South Ossetia is located оn the southern slopes of the Main Caucasus Range in the area of 3900 square meters. Тhe capital is the city of Tskhinval.
One-tenth of the surface occupied by the Republic of the foothills.
The rest of the territory - the mountainous terrain height from 850 to 3938 meters above sea level.
The highest point - Mount Halatsa (3938 m).

Announcement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of South Ossetia

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On the fifth anniversary since recognition of State Independence of South Ossetia by Russian Federation

During decades Georgia was aiming to assert its rule over South Ossetia, using everything for suppression, including ethnic cleansing and direct genocide. Establishment of a sovereign State was the only way for people of South Ossetia to protect their right for life, freedom and human dignity under permanent threat of war from Georgia.

During the collapse of USSR Georgia launched a war against South Ossetia, trying to block right of South Ossetia for self-determination, provided by legislation of the USSR. Thousands of dead, tens of thousands of refugees, tens of burnt and destroyed villages – this was a result left by Georgian military formations.

The bloodshed was stopped only after interference of Russia and cease fire agreement signed in June 1992. According to Sochi agreement Russia was positioned as a mediator between the sides, a demilitarized zone was established on both sides of the contact line, Russian peacekeepers entered the conflict zone. Was established a negotiation mechanism with participation of South Ossetia, Georgia and Russia.

However, instead of fulfilling its obligations, Georgia selected another way: systematic violation of the Sochi agreement obligations, neglection of the agreements reached, political and military provocations, attacks on peacekeepers, negotiation process failure. In 2004 Georgia made another attempt of military invasion to territory of South Ossetia.

In August 2008, violating UN Charter and international agreements, Georgia started a war against South Ossetia. The goal was to eliminate the population and annex the territory. Capital of South Ossetia was under many hour heavy shelling from the ground and from the air causing heavy destruction. Hundreds of people died in a very short time. Georgian forces were killing Russian peacekeepers and civilians, including woman, children, elders. After the end of war, which was possible only upon interference of Russia and peace-enforcement of Georgia, President of Russian Federation signed a Decree on recognition of independence of Republic of South Ossetia.

Decision on recognition of independence of South Ossetia, supported by Russian nation and legislative power of Russian Federation subjects, was motivated to stop regular military attacks of Georgia, ethnic cleansings and act of genocide against people of South Ossetia. Expression of the will of the people of South Ossetia at two referendums in 1992 and 2006, provisions of UN Charter, Declaration of 1970 on principals of the International Law on friendly relations between the states, Helsinki Final Act of 1975 and other generic international documents were used as an international and legal basis for recognition of independence of South Ossetia.

Recognition of Independence South Ossetia by Russia was not only a result of application of basic norms and principles of the International Law but an act that supports the main aspect of the International Law which is - moral. This very aspect is a cornerstone of the International Law and International relations and is regularly checked for strength.

Today South Ossetia is a State with strong democratic traditions, committed to universal human values and observing recognized terms and principles of the International Law. From the day of declaration of independence were carried out four nation-wide referendums, four times was elected President of the State, five times was elected Parliament of the State. Independence of the country was recognized by Russia, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Nauru and Tuvalu. The Republic is rehabilitating the economy destroyed by the war, is implementing socio-economic programs. People of South Ossetia achieved peace that they did not have for twenty years and face future with confidence.

South Ossetia is striving for establishment of friendly relations with all the states of the International Community, strengthening of peace and stability in Caucasus and world-wide. There is a strong belief that with the course of time process of recognition of Republic of South Ossetia will develop and South Ossetia will get a rightful place among other nations. People of South Ossetia will always remember who extended a helping hand, who brought peace to war-torn land of South Ossetia and first recognized its state independence.

Tskhinval, 26 August 2013