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State Dept. condemns Russian agreements

WASHINGTON, May 1 (UPI) -- An agreement Thursday between Russia and Georgia's separatist regions that allows Russia to deploy guards along administrative boundaries is prompting concern.

The U.S. State Department called the agreement between Russia and the leaders of Georgia's Abkhazia and South Ossetia separatist regions a direct conflict with commitments Russia made under a cease-fire agreement, the State Department reported.

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The cease-fire, reached between Georgia and Russia in August 2008, ended a violent conflict between the two countries over the South Ossetia region.

Officials say the Russian agreement will allow the stationing of border guards from Russia along the Abkhazia and South Ossetia administrative boundaries. The State Department called the agreement a violation of Georgia's territorial integrity.

According to a release the State Department calls on Russia to "honor its commitments … (which) includes removing its troops to positions held prior to the start of the conflict, allowing unfettered humanitarian access, and allowing human rights organizations to investigate allegations of ethnic cleansing in the two regions."

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