As I anticipated, generally Russia's targets were military bases; Senaki, Poti and Gori. There were some reports of villages coming under fire from Russia, and a few curious targets.
But what has not been explained is the evidence that was referred to by RIA Novosti that the whole bloody adventure was planned by Georgia well in advance.
I request Saakashvili and my own British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (for the third time since I have so far not received any reply) to confirm that such a plan was known of in advance.
NB the followng disclaimer by the Government of Georgia
"Provided data is operational and may be subject to verification. Information provided by the Government of Georgia through its various agencies and ministries."
Timeline of events in Georgia since August 1, 2008
August 13, 2008
A Service of the Government of Georgia
Provided data is operational and may be subject to verification. Information provided by the Government of Georgia through its various agencies and ministries.
Timeline of events in Georgia since August 1, 2008
16:10 Russian troops from the city of Gori started moving towards Tbilisi
15:20 Alisia Vardanyan, Georgian GPB television journalists reports from Gori that marauding has started in the city. The residents are being robbed; the houses are being demolished by Russian tanks.
15:15 According to the reports from the civilians on the ground, Georgian population of villages Bobnevi, Marana, Dzevera, Khidistavi, Tchalaubani is escaping to the forest from the Ossetian separatists.
15:00 Gigi Mtvarelidze, member of Georgian CEC, have been robbed by the Russian-speaking militaries nearby Gori. They took his car with other possessions.
14:45 Paata Sabelashvili, photographer, reported from highway nearby Gori that mini-bus with Georgian civilians have been robbed by Ossetian separatists, one of the passengers, 25-year old women has been kidnapped by the attackers.
14:20 Many residents of Gori are escaping towards the village of Ateni, south of Gori, according to the reports on the ground.
14:00 In Poti port Russian troops have blown up three Georgia Coast Guard vessels.
13:05 Village Pakhulani, Tsalenjikha district has been entered by Russian soldiers
13:00 According to reports from the ground, village of Atotsi, Kareli district, is entered by Ossetian separatists.
12:35 25 civilians have been kidnapped by Ossetian separatists from the village of Tkviavi. The bus, by which the kidnapped civilians were being transported to Tskhinvali crashed, after which 4 of them managed to escape.
12:00 Russian soldiers are destroying the base of Gori artillery brigade.
Public Defender of Georgia has appealed to the leaders of all democratic countries and international organizations not to leave Georgia alone, and to “take effective measures in order to guard the internationally recognized principles and to help the Georgian people to protect their freedom”.
10:20 According to the local sources, Russian troops have entered Gori.
09:20 Russian armored troops (50 units) head towards Gori from Tskhinvali.
09:12 Four civilian cars with murdered passengers are reported to have been seen in the village of Tedotsminda, Gori district.
08:00 The village of Karaleti, Gori district has been attacked by Ossetian separatists again. The cases of physical assaults and abuses of the local residents are being reported.
06:50 Two bombs have been dropped by Russian aviation in village Saqasheti, Gori district. Only one of the bombes exploded.
01.05 According to the information from the local civilian sources, Ossetian separatists are taking hostage Georgian residents of villages Nikozi, Dzveri, Tkviavi, Karaleti (north of Gori).
Population of village Berbuki, Gori District is gathered on the road, asking to be evacuated.
23:12 Reports have come from that Ossetian separatists are ravaging the following Georgian villages: Berbuki, Rakha, Sveneti, Kheltubani, Karaleti.
22:52 Three foreign journalists have been robbed of their car in the village of Karaleti, Gori District.
21:50 Senaki military base is being ravaged by Russian troops. Equipment and arms are being either taken or destroyed by Russians.
21:35 Alarming reports come from the villages of Arbo and Ditsi north of Gori. According to the information from the local sources, Ossetian separatists are brutally massacring Georgian population of these villages.
According to the local sources, Georgian population of villages Kordi and Mereti, Gori district, is being brutally assaulted and abused by Ossetian separatists.
In Tkviavi, Gori district, Ossetian separatists are assaulting local Georgian residents. At list one murder is reported.
In Tchilisubani, Gori district, the local residents are hiding in the basements of their houses, asking to be evacuated..
19:10 Russian troops moved towards Khaishi, Svanetia north of the Zugdidi and occupied it. They entered Upper Abkhazia from the east.
15:00-19:00 Georgian Coast Guard command center has been attacked by Russian soldiers for three times. Equipment has been taken away or destroyed. The Georgian Coast Guard vessels have been damaged.
18:30 South Ossetian separatists entered village Disevi in Gori district and committed acts of ethnic cleansing, burning houses and attacking population. Russian militaries are witnessing all these and are not reacting.
18:30 South Ossetian separatists entered village Karaleti in Gori district and committed acts of ethnic cleansing, burning houses and attacking population.
18:00 Village Tkotsa Khashuri district 4 bombes were droped. None of them exploded.
18:00 Russian militaries began exploding Georgian ships harbored in Poti port.
18:00The share holders of Kulevi Terminal have been notifed by Russian militaries about planed bombing of the oil terminal.
17:30 Abkhazian troops mobilized heavy armored vehicles in demilitarized zone in village Ganmukhuri which they took day before and organized customs.
16:30 Russian troops entered the territory of Gori TV transmition station. One employee has been killed three injured. Russians destroyed equipment of the station. As a result the only Russian speaking TV station Alanya TV is out of air. The region can not receive Georgian Public Broadcasting channel as well.
16:30 At the grand rally held in Tbilisi, the President Saakashvili announced about the decision of the government of Georgia to withdraw from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
14:50 Village Sakoritno in Kaspi region and village Ruisi in Kareli region are bombed by Russian aviation
14:00 In village Agara (Khashuri region) Russian military jet bombarded an ambulance vehicle.
13:25 Three Russian airplanes dropped bombs on the village of Orchosani near Gori.
12:30 Vaziani base nearby Tbilisi has been bombed by Russian planes.
12:25 Oil pipeline 5 km from the city of Rustavi has been bombed.
10:15 Russian planes bombed Gori. The territory around administration building, hospital, university and city market have been bombed. 5 civilians died including one child and doctor of the hospital, 15 injured. Dutch journalist has been killed. Gori was left by Georgian troops day before.
In the morning ours of 12 August Russian airplanes bombed the village of Tkviavi near Tskhinvali once again.
03:25 Russian envoy to the UN Churkin announced on the press conference that Russia will not support the resolution. Georgian envoy Alasania announced that suggested resolution is acceptable to Georgia.
02:15 Emergency meeting of the Security Council of the UN started. The resolution about cease-fire prepared by France was discussed.
02:05 Russian aviation bombarded Kaspi 30 Km from Tbilisi out of conflict zone. 3 bombs were dropped near the Heidelberg Cement factory (one from the two cement factories in the country). No damage was reported.
01:15 President of the United states George W. Bush made supportive statement to Georgia. "Russia has invaded a sovereign neighboring state and threatens a democratic government elected by its people. Such an action is unacceptable in the 21st century," the president said in a televised statement from the White House, calling on Moscow to sign on to the outlines of a cease-fire as the Georgian government has done
20:30 Russian Army took Gori and cut main highway connecting Western and Eastern parts of the country.
20:26 Ministry of Economic Development received the letter from the captian of Cargo Ship “Castor” that it was prevented to enter Poti Port. The other cargo ship “Asha” was prevented enter Poti Port before, during the same day.
20:10 Invading army of the Russian Federation has advancing outside the conflict zones of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The Russian army units move towards city Gori. The Georgian army is retreating to defend the capital. The Government is urgently seeking international intervention to prevent the fall of Georgia and the further loss of life.
19:30 Russian troops advanced deep into Georgian territory from west and entered
Senaki 210 Km from Tbilisi, out of the conflict zone.
19:20 US deputy assistant secretary made supportive announcement to Georgia. He mentioned that, time would come when International Peace keeping force will enter Georgia and restore Georgia’s territorial Integrity.
19:00 The camp for IDPs was opened in Tbilisi.
18:20 Ossetian separatist forces entered village Beloti near Eredvi. They took hostage remaining civilian population and locked them in local church.
18:10 Russian Troops attacked and took village Shindisi of Gori district.
17:30 Russian Aviation bombed village Kere of Gori District.
Russian peace keepers with heavy equipment entered Zugdidi to disarm local police.
By 17:00 they began to occupy administrative buildings.
14:30 Senaki base is bombed by Russian aviation.
13:30 President Saakashvili signs a ceasefire agreement, prepared by the foreign ministers of France, Finland, and Georgia. The foreign ministers of France and Finland are taking the agreement to Moscow in order to persuade President Medvedev to sign it.
12:05 Russian aviation is bombing Georgian servicemen in Upper Abkhazia.
10:00 Village of Eredvi came under the fire of Russian artillery.
07:15 Senaki airport is bombed by Russian airplanes.
06:10 Gori tank battalion is bombed. A civilian apartment building nearby has been hit.
05:00 Shiraki airfield in Dedoplistskaro District on the east of the country is bombed by Russian jets.
04:37 Civilian radar station on Makhata mount in 5 kilometers from downtown Tbilisi is bombed by Russian planes.
03:05 Villages of Sharabidzeebi, Kapandichi, Makho near Batumi are bombed by Russian planes. Graveyard and villagers’ backyard have been hit. No casualties
00:30 Civilian radar station in the village of Shavshvebi west of Tbilisi is bombed by Russian planes.
00:00 Five wounded policemen transported to Zugdidi hospital from Upper Abkhazia.
20:00 Positional fighting near village of Qvabchara in Upper Abkhazia.
19:10 “Tbilaviamsheni” aviation factory was bombarded by Russian aviation again.
19:05 Russian aviation dropped bomb on Tbilisi International Airport.
18:00 The Black Sea town of Anaklia 280 km from Tbilisi, is bombed by Russian airplanes. No casualties reported
17:30 Georgian Ministry of Foreign affairs handed diplomatic note to the Charg d’affirs of Russian embassy Mr Smag. According to the order of the president Georgia, Georgian Government forces stopped fire in the conflict zone.
Deputy Foreign Minister of Russia Karasin announced the terms of ceasefire. Georgia have to withdraw on the positions existing before the beginning of the conflict and take responsibility of non use of force.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russian Federation announced that journalists wanting to enter Russian-Georgian conflict zone have to have special accreditation from Ministry of Defense and second accreditation from Ministry of Foreign affairs of Russia.
16:10 Russian aviation bombarded only remaining bridge on the Highway linking eastern and western parts of the country. There was a fire on the bridge. Fire is extinguished. The traffic is restored.
16:05 Gori is being bombed by Russian aviation.
15:10 Russian troops and Abkhaz separatists launch ground attack on Upper Abkhazia. The region is being bombed by Russian aviation.
15:00 Russian airplanes bomb the village of Knolevi in the northern Kareli district.
By noon of 10 August there are 20 to 25 thousand IDPs from the regions of Tskhinvali and Gori, as a result of Russian attacks. The number of IDPs is growing quickly.
09:00 Government of Georgia reported 45 soldiers and 47 civilians died.
08:45 Ten Russian jets attack Upper Abkhazia. One jet has been downed by Georgian Government troops.
07:40 Russian jets bomb village of Urta in Zugdidi district.
07:00 Georgian Government Forces withdraw from Tskhinvali.
Russian General Khrulyov, commander of the invading 58th army was wounded after shelling Russian military convoy by Georgian artillery.
05:45 Russian jet entered Georgian airspace from Dagestan and dropped 3 Bombs on Tbilisi airplane factory.
6,000 Russian troops enter Georgia through Roki tunnel overnight; 90 tanks; 150 Armored Personnel Carriers; 250 artillery gunships.
4,000 Russian troops land at port of Ochamchire in Abkhazia, from Black Sea port of Sevastopol.
22:30 Russian air forces bombarded Chkhalta, administrative center of Upper Abkhazia. No Casualties reported.
By 19:45 Tskhinvali is under ultimate control of Georgian Government troops.
Russian Navy prevented Moldovan Cargo Ship Lotus - 1 carrying wheat from entering Poti Port. Lotus - 1 was forced to go back.
16:35 The town of Oni in northern Georgia is bombarded by Russian aviation.
16:15 Two Russian battleships are heading towards Poti port. By this time they are near Gudauta.
16:05 Four Russian jets flew over Upper Abkazia.
15:45 Abkhaz separatist leader Sergey Bagapsh announced the launch of bombardment of Upper Abkhazia.
14:30 The Parliament approved ordinance of the Declaration on the State of War and full mobilization.
14:00 Russian air force attack Upper Abkhazia (Kodori gorge) in several places, including the airdrome in the village of Omarishara.
12:40 Kopitnari airdrome is bombed again.
10:22 Russian air force continues to bomb Gori, located 60 kilometers northwest from Tbilisi and is outside the conflict zone.
10:20 One more Russian military airplane is shot down in Gori, located 60 kilometers northwest from Tbilisi and is outside the conflict zone. The pilot has been captured.
10:00 Russian air force bomb Kopitnari airdrome in several kilometers from Kutaisi.
The entire 58th Russian Army, located in the North Caucasus, enters the South Ossetia region. They are engaged in battle with the Georgian army in Tskhinvali, which is in the conflict zone and 92 kilometers northwest from Tbilisi.
01:20 Gatchiani in the Gardabani districts was bombarded, which is 20 kilometers southeast of Tbilisi and outside the conflict zone and is also close to the BTC pipeline, but the pipeline is not damaged.
01:00 Poti was bombarded a second time, which is located on the Black Sea coast, 260 kilometers west from Tbilisi, is outside the conflict zone and is a pure civilian target.
00:34 Person calling himself “Armen” calls the 022 Patrol Police number and says a bomb is planted in President’s Residence. He also says the new President Administration and Ministry of Internal Affair buildings will soon be bombarded.
00:20 Vaziani airfield is bombed again, which is 2-3 kilometers from Tbilisi International Airport and is located outside the conflict zone.
00:17 Lightening bombs are dropped on Senaki military base, which is 213 kilometers west of Tbilisi and is outside the conflict zone. 1 serviceman and 5 reservists were reported killed. The railway station in Senaki is also bombed and eight are killed.
00:12 Poti port, which is located on the Black Sea coast, 260 kilometers west from Tbilisi, is outside the conflict zone and is a pure civilian target, is bombed heavily.
22:40 According to Ministry of Defense, Russian planes violated Georgian airspace a total of 22 times.
22:15 The type and place of Russian planes taken down during the day not located yet.
21:45 Policemen and reservists who were surrounded in the Znauri school bulding, five kilometers west of Tskinvali, are rescued by government forces.
21:11 The separatist authorities claim to have altogether 1400 people dead and wounded. At the same time, the Russian Ministry of Defense announces that there are 10 dead among Russian “peacekeepers”.
20:30 After severe clashes in Tskinvali, Georgian forces start to withdraw from the center of the town, holding their positions at its southern outskirts. Russian tanks enter the eastern part of Tskinvali.
19:20 2 Russian planes pass over Ambrolauri, which is 170 kilometers northwest of Tbilisi and is outside the conflict zone.
19:18 5 Russian airplanes were shot down during the day. Last one is shot down at approximately 19:00 near Tskhinvali.
18:45 Georgian Gori artillery brigade is bombarded by 5 Russian airplanes.
18:44 A motorcade of Russian tanks, armored vehicles and trucks loaded with different kinds of weapons reach Tskinvali by the Dzara by-pass road, 2 kilometers west of Tskinvali. The Russians opens intensive fire towards Georgian forces located in Tskinvali and on the neighboring heights. A second motorcade, which also came from Russia via the Roki tunnel, is stopped near the Georgian government controlled area of Dmenisi, 7 kilometers north of Tskinvali, and Russians open heavy fire toward Georgian forces.
18:32 Frone gorge, northeat of Tskinvali, is under intensive artillery fire by Russian forces. Villages Avnevi and Phrisi, in the Tskinvali region, are bombarded by Russian military aircraft.
17:35 Marneuli military airbase, 20 kilometers south of Tbilisi and outside the conflict zone, is bombed for the third time resulting in 1 death and 4 injured. As a result of three bombings, three grounded AN-2 type planes and military vehicles stationed there are destroyed.
17:00 Marneuli military airbase is bombed for the second time causing casualties.
16.30 Russian aviation bombs Marneuli and Bolnisi military airbases, 20 kilometers and 35 kilometers south of Tbilisi respectively. Two aircrafts were destroyed on ground. Also several buildings were destroyed and there are casualties.
16:03Two Russian planes enter Georgian airspace from the North. One more flies over Djava. Two more fly across the border near Chechnya.
By 16:00 about 40 officers of Criminal Police and Reservists are trapped in Znauri school.
15:30 Ossetian separatists destroyed 3 Georgian tanks at Dzari by-pass road.
15:05 Russian military plane enters Georgia from the direction of Tedzami, just south of Gori, and drop two bombs on the Vaziani military airport and turned back.
14.30 Almost 100% of Tskhinvali is controlled by Georgian forces. Just several small groupings are still resisting.
14.15 Georgian government announces a ceasefire from 15.00 till 18.00 to let civilian population leave Tskhinvali. Separatists are also offered amnesty and humanitarian aid if they surrender.
13:00 Part of Thskinvali is controlled by Georgian army and fighting continues in the center. The civilian population does not resist. They are ordered to stay inside their houses.
12.05 One Su-24 enters Georgian air space from Russia and remained over Tskhinvali till 12.15.
By 12.00 Eight Georgians (6 military and 2 civilians) have died and 87 are injured. 1 military truck with ammunition was destroyed.
11:45 Emergency Service of Civil Aviation report receiving a signal from a crashed flying object (presumably Russian fighter plane) near Iuri range, 17 km south from Gori.
11.45: Four Su-24 Russian jet enter Georgia from the direction of Stepantsminda (Kazbeg), northeast of the Roki tunnel and outside of the conflict zone. Two of them pass Tbilisi and make two circles around Marneuli. The other two make a circle above Gudauri.
10:57: Two of the six Russian aircraft drop three bombs in Gori. One of these fell near the stadium, the second near Gorijvari slope and third near an artillery brigade.
10.50: Six Su-24 fighter planes enter from the Roki pass.
10.30 Russian Su-24 bombs the village of Variani in the Kareli district, 75 kilometers west of Tbilisi and outside the conflict zone. Seven civilians were injured as a result.
9.45: A Russian military fighter plane drops about 3-5 bombs near the village of Shavshvebi, on the highway between Poti and Tbilisi and is 300-500 meters from Georgian military radar.
By 9:00 Georgian Forces control the villages of Gromi, Artsevi, Tsinagara, Znauri, Sarabuki, Khetagurovo, Atotsi, Kvemo Okuna, Dmenisi, Muguti and Didmukha.
8:00: First group of Russian troops together with Gufta Bridge are destroyed by a Georgian aerial bombardment. Later two more groups of Russian troops enter South Ossetia through the Roki tunnel, which connects Russia and Georgia, but could not cross the Gufta Bridge which was destroyed and moved by the Geri-Dmenisi road.
5:30: First Russian troops enter through Roki tunnel South Ossetia, passed Java, crossed Gufta bridge and moved by Dzara road towards Tskhinvali.
By 4:28: Georgian armed forces are in control of six villages in the Tskhinvali region: Muguti, Dmenisi, Didmukha, Okona, Akut and Kohati. It is also reported that Georgian forces entered the village of Khetagurovo.
2:45: Reports are received of Georgian troops occupying the villages of Didmukha, Muguti and Dmenisi.
During the night and early morning intensive fire came from the Ossetian villages of Khetagurovo, Dmenisi, Sarabuki, and Ubiat. Separatist authorities continued shelling Georgian law enforcers and Peacekeeping units with mortars and artillery. The central authorities responded with limited fire in order to defend the positions.
In the morning interview with Russian news agencies, South Ossetian de facto president Eduard Kokoity declared that if the Georgian government did not withdraw its military forces from the region, he would start “to clean them out.”
President Saakashvili speaking with journalists in the military hospital in Gori, where he visited the two injured Georgian servicemen, said that despite attacks on the Georgian villages, Tbilisi was showing “maximum restraint.” Saakashvili also called on Russia to “to recall its officials” from South Ossetia, who consider themselves as the so-called South Ossetian government.
Temur Yakobashvili, visited the conflict zone in the morning of August 7 to meet with representatives of the separatist government. The State Minister met with Marat Kulakhmetov, commander of the Joint Peacekeeping Forces, in Tskhinvali. But, the separatists refused to negotiate with him.
The chairman of the separatist republic’s Security Council, Anatoly Barankevich threatened that armed groupings of Cossacks from North Ossetia were headed towards South Ossetia to fight against Georgian forces.
The separatists resumed shelling of Georgian villages Nuli and Avnevi by 16:00. Three Georgian servicemen were injured after the South Ossetian separatist forces blew up an infantry combat vehicle belonging to the Georgian peacekeeping battalion in Avnevi. Georgian police responded by firing towards the separatist armed grouping in village Khetagurovo, where two separatist militiamen were killed and two more wounded. Later, the check-point of Georgian peacekeepers was bombed in Avnevi and several Georgian servicemen and civilians were killed.
Georgia has decided to “unilaterally cease fire” in a sign of Tbilisi’s willingness to defuse tensions, Temur Yakobashvili, the Georgian state minister for reintegration, announced at a press conference in Tbilisi at 6:40pm. Yakobashvili said that he was not able to get in touch with the separatist authorities.
President Saakashvili said in a live televised address made at 7:10pm, that he had ordered the Georgian forces to cease fire in South Ossetia. He said there were casualties, both dead and many people wounded. Saakashvili said that he ordered to cease fire “on purpose” to again offer the South Ossetian secessionists to resume talks.
Despite Georgia’s decision not to return fire, the Georgian village of Avnevi again came under fire of the South Ossetian militiamen at about 8:30pm. It can be said that the village was totally destroyed as a result.
The South Ossetian separatist armed groupings fired at the Georgian-controlled village of Prisi at about 10:30 pm. The attack left several people wounded on the Georgian side.
The separatist authorities opened fire at all Georgian positions around the South Ossetian capital Tskhinvali at about 23:30, including the villages of Tamarasheni and Kurta. The police stations in Kurta was destroyed as a result of heavy shelling.
According to witnesses from local population, at about 9.45 a military fighter plane, presumably Russian (it entered Georgia from South Ossetian side) dropped off about 3-5 bombs near village Shavshvebi, 300-500 meters from Georgian military radar.
Late on 6 August, separatists opened mortar fire at Georgian populated villages of Eredvi, Prisi, Avnevi, Dvani and Nuli. Georgian government forces fired back in order to defend the positions and civilian population. As a result of intensive cross-fire during the night, two servicemen of the Georgian battalion of the Joint Peacekeeping Forces were injured. Separatist regime also claimed several injured persons on their side. Despite the targeted attacks on peaceful population and villages, as well as on the Georgian police and peacekeeping forces, the central authorities decided not to respond through heavy exchange of fire, in order not to injure the local population.
Temur Yakobashvili, Georgian chief negotiator and state minister for reintegration, said in late night televised remarks on August 6 that it was the position of the Georgian government that only a direct dialogue with Tskinvali authorities would solve the deteriorating security situation. Mr. Yakobashvili also stressed that Ambassador-at-large Yuri Popov would attend the talks as a facilitator. South Ossetian chief negotiator, Boris Chochiev, refused to take part in negotiations.
During 4 and 5 August no serious incidents have been observed.
South Ossetian separatist government announced evacuation of more than 500 people, including about 400 children. However, Ermak Dzansolov, deputy prime minister of Russia’s North Ossetian Republic, told Interfax news agency that it was not an evacuation. Sending children to North Ossetia was part of a pre-arranged summer-camp programme, as he explained.
Russian media outlets started a massive propaganda campaign against Georgia.
South Ossetian media sources reported on the mobilization of volunteers across the North Caucasus.
Six civilians and one Georgian policeman were injured after the shelling of Georgian villages in the South Ossetian conflict zone overnight. The Georgian-controlled villages of Zemo Nikozi, Kvemo Nikozi, Nuli, Avnevi, Eredvi and Ergneti came under intense fire from the South Ossetian separatists with large calibre mortars. Georgian law enforcers shot back defensively for some time, but then received an order of ceasefire in order not to escalate the situation.
At about 8:00 AM, Tbilisi time, a pickup vehicle with six Georgian police officers was hit by two remote control explosive devices on the Eredvi-Kheiti by-pass road linking the Didi Liakhvi Gorge – a Georgian enclave north of the breakaway region’s capital Tskhinvali - with Georgia proper. As a result of the attack, five Georgian policemen were severely wounded. The central authorities decided not to retaliate in order not to escalate the situation.