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South Ossetia closes border with Georgia for three days over elections

April 07, 2017, 1:20 UTC+3 TSKHINVAL

The checkpoints will resume operation as normal since 8 p.m. on April 10

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TSKHINVAL, April 7. /TASS/. South Ossetia will close its border with Georgia late on Friday due to holding presidential elections, the press service of the republic’s State Security Committee told TASS.

"Due to the tightening of security during the presidential elections in the Republic of South Ossetia and referendum on renaming the republic, between 8 p.m. on April 7 and April 10 the citizens won’t be temporarily allowed to cross the state border with Georgia in the places with simplified border crossing procedures," it said.

The checkpoints will resume operation as normal since 8 p.m. on April 10.

Police have been on alert since Thursday to ensure public order and security of citizens and prevent possible acts of sabotage and terrorism or other serious crimes. More than 700 police officers will be involved in the effort.

Presidential elections and a referendum on renaming South Ossetia as the State of Alania will be held on April 9. Three candidates will run for president, including current leader Leonid Tibilov, Parliament Speaker Anatoly Bibilov, who is the leader of the United Ossetia party, and State Security Committee’s officer Alan Gagloyev.

Citizens will be able to vote at the polls and take part in the referendum at 77 ballot stations. Seventy-two of them will open on April 9 in South Ossetia and five others beyond its borders - in Moscow, Abkhazia’s Sukhum, and three in North Ossetia.

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