MOSCOW, May 2 (UPI) -- European support for claims by Georgia over the breakaway republic of South Ossetia is a troubling sign, the republic's foreign minister said.
Europe's High Representative for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton last week expressed "concern" with a visit to the breakaway republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
Ashton implied that permission from Georgia was needed before Russian officials could visit the disputed territories.
Russian went to war with Georgia in 2008 after Georgian forces stormed the separatist republic of South Ossetia. The conflict spilled over to engulf Abkhazian forces.
Moscow recognized both republics shortly after the conflict and signed agreements in 2010 to build permanent military installations in the breakaway regions.
"Signs of support from the West, like Mrs. Ashton ones, which are addressed to the 'fighters for Georgia's territorial integrity' in fact incite them into a new conflict," a statement from the ministry read.
The International Court of Justice ruled in April that it had no jurisdiction in a case of alleged human rights violations by Russians in the two separatist regions in Georgia.
Georgia said Moscow violated a 1965 treaty in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, bringing the case before the ICJ at the end of a 2008 war with Russia.