Agresja czy samoobrona? Prawo Gruzji do użycia siły w sierpniu 2008 roku
AGGRESSION OR SELF DEFENCE? THE RIGHT TO USE FORCE BY GEORGIA IN AUGUST 2008
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According to the commonly shared opinion and experts’ views contained in various reports prepared by intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations (inter alia OSCE, EU and Amnesty International) an incident that triggered the so-called five-day war in August 2008 was the artillery fire aimed at Tskhinvali, the capital city of the breakaway region of South Ossetia, launched by the Georgian armed forces during the night of 7 to 8 August, 2008 in an attempt to “restore constitutional order” in South Ossetia by Georgia. It was, doubtless, the climax of the tensions that escalated in the region over the years, caused by mutual instigations and incidents often involving the use of military force. However, taking into consideration the stipulations of international law, we must ask a question whether Georgia was right to launch a military action in order to solve the Ossetic problem. The launch of the military action in South Ossetia is recognized by some politicians and lawyers preoccupied with international law as an act of aggression, whereas according to others it was an intervention aimed at the protection of Georgian civilians inhabiting the region of South Ossetia. Moreover, questions are being asked concerning the legitimacy of the Georgian army’s hostilities against the Russian troops that stationed in the aforementioned republic. Finally, actions in Abkhazia, in particular, in view of the legitimacy of the right to self-defence as quoted by Georgia, deserve a separate analysis.
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