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Cablegate: Georgia: August 8 Eac Report

O 081732Z AUG 08
FM AMEMBASSY TBILISI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9866

C O N F I D E N T I A L TBILISI 001342


FOR U/S KENNEDY, EUR A/S FRIED AND DAS BRYZA, AND S/ES DAN
SMITH FROM AMBASSADOR TEFFT

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/08/2018
TAGS: ASEC PREL AEMR CASC GG
SUBJECT: GEORGIA: AUGUST 8 EAC REPORT

Classifie...

C O N F I D E N T I A L TBILISI 001342 FOR U/S KENNEDY, EUR A/S FRIED AND DAS BRYZA, AND S/ES DAN SMITH FROM AMBASSADOR TEFFT E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/08/2018 TAGS: ASEC PREL AEMR CASC GG

SUBJECT: GEORGIA: AUGUST 8 EAC REPORT Classified By: AMBASSADOR JOHN F. TEFFT. REASONS: 1.4 (B) AND (D). 1. (C) Embassy's EAC met twice on August 8 to review the Embassy's security posture and to consider EAP tripwires in response to continued violence in South Ossetia. At the end of the discussion, the EAC recommended the issuance of a warden notice and a travel warning with regard to travel in the separatist regions and within Georgia, but was divided over the question of authorized departure. 2. (C) Currently, no embassies in Tbilisi have taken action beyond the issuance of warden notices and travel warnings. The UK Ambassador confirmed to me the evening of August 8 that all the EU embassies, including the UK, French and German missions, are remaining in place and will assess the situation in South Ossetia again following the weekend. In fact, a large number of high-level European officials, including the French, Swedish and Lithuanian Foreign Ministers, are expected to arrive in Tbilisi on August 9, to take part in ongoing negotiations. 3. (C) The EAC agreed that although some tripwires had been crossed, others have not. If other tripwires are crossed, including an explosion or attack in Tbilisi or a cut-off of utilities or air traffic, we would need to immediately reassess our position on authorized departure. 4. (C) The situation in South Ossetia is dangerous; however, there is no indication or evidence that Tbilisi is under immediate threat. The situation is currently the subject of high-level discussions with the Russian Government and others that are directed toward a ceasefire and a negotiated settlement. If the situation persists and these negotiations are unsuccesful, we will need to consider requesting authorized departure for those who wish to leave. Although we cannot predict the outcome of these high-level negotiations, we would not want to be in a position to tell everyone to leave at the same time the situation is stabilizing. 5. (C) Meanwhile, we continue to review our security and possible drawdown procedures, making contact with neighboring posts that might be called upon to assist in an evacuation, reviewing our lists of essential personnel and ensuring that our motorpool is ready to move at short notice. We have also tested the embassy telephone tree to ensure that all personnel can be reached over the weekend if necessary. The EAC will reconvene the morning of Saturday, August 9, to assess the latest situation in South Ossetia and any potential effect upon the safety and security of the American community. TEFFT

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