France to ask UN to 'cement' Georgia-Russia plan

10:47, 14 August 2008
World
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By the end of the week

France plans to ask the U.N. Security Council to approve by the end of the week its six-point plan for ending hostilities between Georgia and Russia, diplomats said Wednesday, according to AP.

The French-drafted Security Council proposal is still being worked out, but is largely based on a text rolled out just before Georgia and Russia agreed to a cease-fire plan brokered by French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

In Georgia, Russian troops and paramilitaries entered the strategic Georgian city of Gori Wednesday, apparently violating the truce`s provisions.

Sarkozy, who is president of the European Union for the rest of the year, also is leading an EU initiative to bring peace in Georgia and the two separatist regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia that have been largely overrun by Russia since fighting broke out last week.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday the United States strongly supports France`s mediation effort and is focused for the moment on reminding Russia it has an obligation to cease its military advances in Georgia.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said Russia was halting military action because Georgia had paid enough for its attack on South Ossetia last week. But Rice said that "Russia has now pushed this well beyond" the South Ossetian conflict.

Under France`s draft proposal, the 15-nation Security Council would require that fighting cease immediately, Russian and Georgian troops return to positions held before the fighting, Georgia`s sovereignty is respected, and cooperation be given to peacekeepers and relief workers.

AP

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