WCC team sees vengeful violence in Georgian area

A state of lawlessness
A World Council of Churches team that included two U.S. clergy returned to the WCC’s Swiss headquarters from a visit to Georgia and Russia to describe a state of “lawlessness” in areas of South Ossetia and said humanitarian aid is not reaching people caught up in the conflict.

“Threats and violence have driven tens of thousands of people from their homes, and the greatest destruction appears to be the postconflict destruction of communities abandoned during the conflict,” Jonathan Frerichs, a WCC program executive who took part in the five-day visit, told a September 9 briefing in Geneva.

Tensions between Russia and Georgia over the Moscow-backed separatist region of South Ossetia erupted August 7 when the Georgian army is said to have launched an assault to regain control of the region. This triggered a counteroffensive by Russian troops into the Georgian heartland.


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