McCain Calls for Russia to Pull Out of Georgia
By Michael D. Shear
DES MOINES -- Sen. John McCain called on Russia to immediately withdraw its military forces from the republic of Georgia and said the U.S should request a meeting of the United Nations Security Council in the wake of the escalating violence between the two countries.
"Russia should immediately and unconditionally cease its military operations and withdraw all forces from sovereign Georgian territory. What is most critical now is to avoid further confrontation between Russian and Georgian military forces," McCain said.
The Republican nominee made an impromptu statement on the situation on the airport tarmac in Des Moines before heading to the Iowa State Fair for an afternoon of campaigning.
His full statement is below:
"The news reports indicate that the Russian military forces crossed an internationally recognized border into the sovereign territory of Georgia. Russia should immediately and unconditionally cease its military operations and withdraw all forces from sovereign Georgian territory. What is most critical now is to avoid further confrontation between Russian and Georgian military forces. The consequences of Euro-Atlantic stability and security are grave. The government of Georgia has called for a cease fire and for resumption of direct talks on South Ossetia with international mediators. The U.S. should
immediately convene an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council to call on Russia to reverse course. The U.S. should immediately work with the E.U. and the OSCE to put diplomatic pressure on Russia to reverse this perilous course that it has chosen.
We should immediately call a meeting of the North Atlantic Council to assess Georgia's security and review measures NATO can take to contribute to stabilizing this very dangerous situation. Finally, the international community needs to establish a truly independent and neutral peacekeeping force in South Ossetia."
Posted at 11:11 AM ET on Aug 8, 2008
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