MOSCOW, August 8 (Itar-Tass) —— The Russian Investigation Committee continues to investigate the tragic events in South Ossetia in August 2008.
“The investigation period has been extended until February 8, 2013,” Investigation Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin told Itar-Tass. “Plenty of investigative and procedural actions have been taken, and the case file has exceeded 400 volumes.”
Materials give hard proof against Georgian officials, Markin said.
“Detectives have thoroughly examined incident scenes, questioned several thousands of witnesses, victims and specialists, and held over 600 examinations and investigative procedures. Irrefutable evidence has been collected to the perpetration of crimes against peace and humanity in the Republic of South Ossetia in August 2008 by Georgian top-ranking officials and chief law enforcers,” he said.
“The accumulated evidence, including the nature and locale of destructions, numerous expert reports and their comprehensive analysis and comparison showed that the heavy weaponry shooting at the premises of the [Russian] peacekeeping battalion came from Georgian areas and was neither provoked nor determined by other circumstances,” he said.
Detectives revealed that the Georgian attack on South Ossetia killed and wounded civilians, burned and flattened to the ground 655 homes, partially damaged over 2,100 homes, fully or partially damaged public utilities, hospitals, schools and kindergartens. More than 16,000 residents of South Ossetia, most of them Russian citizens, had to flee their homes.
On August 8-9, 2008, Georgian servicemen systematically opened gunfire at the location of the Russian peacekeeping battalion, using various types of firearms and heavy armaments. Ten peacekeepers died in the attacks, and 40 were wounded. The infrastructure of the Russian peacekeepers’ compound on the southwestern outskirts of Tskhinvali was destroyed.