Timeline of the August war 200808.08.2019 | 15 Min to read
February 4 - New road on Mushaki Ridge
During the inspection of Botlikh Mountain Infantry Brigade Putin categorically demands quick completion of road going through Mushaki Ridge; he said: "This will be one more corridor to Georgia."
March 21 - Advice from Russian Duma
Russian State Duma calls upon the Kremlin to consider the possibility of recognizing Abkhazian and South Ossetian independence. The document also calls upon the Russian government to consider "the possibility of strengthening [Russian] peacekeeping forces deployed in Georgian-Abkhazian and Georgian-Ossetian conflict zones."
March 28 - One more peace initiative from Saakashvili
President Saakashvili offered Sukhumi one more peace proposal, which envisaged the creation of joint free economic zones as well as a common customs and border area. "If we all work on that issue, I'm sure the ice will start to melt, otherwise, all of us, Georgia, including Abkhazians, will have to expect a very obscure future full of risks."- Saakashvili said.
April 1 - Russia doubles the amount of its "peacekeepers" in Abkhazia
Russia doubles the amount of its "peacekeepers" in Abkhazia without consulting Georgia and includes units of Novorossiysk Airborne Infantry Division in "peacekeeping forces" in violation of all agreements.
April 16 - Putin tightens control
Vladimir Putin's new initiative implies the opening of official Russian representations in de-facto South Ossetian and Abkhazian structures - "in order to establish direct official cooperation with the relevant bodies of both self-proclaimed republics."
April 20 - Unmanned aerial vehicle in Abkhazia
Russian plane shot down a Georgian drone in Abkhazia.
May 21 - Bus explosion in Khurcha
During the Parliamentary elections in Georgia, footage of a bus explosion near Abkhazian administrative border in the village of Khurcha was broadcast by TV stations. Tbilisi said Abkhazian separatists opened fire on the people coming to Georgian-controlled areas in order to participate in the elections. "We have investigated that incident and concluded that there are very many issues that cast doubt on the official version. It's strange that the place where the explosion took place is in no way connected with the road voters had to use in order to participate in elections." - International observer Aege Borchgrevink said.
June 30 - Russian military exercises
North Caucasus Military District units and Russian Federal Security Service troops start military exercises near Georgian borders.
July 3 - Explosion of Sanakoev's car
Head of Temporary Administration of South Ossetia Dimitri Sanakoev's vehicle tripped a mine and his convoy was ambushed by gunmen. Three bodyguards were wounded. Ministry of the Interior of Georgia stated that Sanakoev's car "blew up on the mine placed by Ossetian separatists". Moscow said it was a "staged incident". Georgian law enforcers didn't allow observers from Russian peacekeeping forces and OSCE to investigate the area. Starting from the night of July 4 fire-fights between Georgian and Ossetian forces never ceased, which eventually culminated in the August 8 Russian-Georgian War.
July 6 - Explosion in Gal
July 7 - US statement on Abkhazia
US Department of State said there was "an utmost necessity" of forming international police forces in self-proclaimed Abkhazia. The United States condemned the explosions that took place in the region including the Gali incident. Georgian government noted that it was ready to form a joint Georgian-Abkhazian police force in Gali and Ochamchire under international supervision. Sukhumi and Moscow were categorically against these changes.
July 10 - Condoleezza Rice's visit to Tbilisi
During her visit to Tbilisi Rice said conflicts in Georgia had to be resolved in a peaceful manner based on the principle of Georgia's territorial integrity. Rice once again repeated that the United States was concerned by Russia's actions in self-proclaimed regions as they didn't encourage the peaceful resolution of the conflicts.
July 15 - Demonstration of military force
Russia's North Caucasian Military District launched large-scale military exercises titled "Caucasus 2008"; 8,000 troops took part in the exercises from the Russian army, internal troops, and border guards from Federal Security Service. At the same time, 2,000 troops mainly from the United States and Georgia commenced military exercises titled "Immediate Response - 2008" on Vaziani military base. Troops from Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Ukraine also took part in the exercises. US Lieutenant General William Garrett said the main goal of the exercises was to deepen cooperation between the US and Georgian military forces.
July 25 - Russia opens a new military hospital
Russian Defense Ministry's Special Medical Team opens a new military hospital in Tarskoe firing range, which could handle 300 wounded per day.
July 26 - Military bases in South Ossetia
Russia completes the construction of military bases in Tskhinvali and Java.
July 28- Peacekeepers are not allowed in Cholibauri
Command Headquarters of Joint Peacekeeping Forces in the conflict zone said South Ossetian armed forces didn't allow peacekeepers and OSCE observers to conduct the monitoring in the village of Cholibauri. Georgian authorities claimed the Ossetian armed forces were building fortifications near the village.
August 1 -Police officers blown up in the conflict zone
At 8 a.m. Georgian police pickup truck was blown up by two roadside bombs that were remotely detonated. Five Georgian policemen were wounded in the attack. An intensive firefight started in the evening of that day and lasted through the whole night. Both sides blamed each other for opening fire first. During the attack on the Georgian villages of Zemo and Kvemo Nikozi, Avnevi, Nuli, Ergneti, Eredvi and Zemo Prisi six civilians and one police officer were wounded. Tskhinvali said 6 Ossetian fighters were killed and 15 were wounded in the firefight.
August 2 - Evacuation of Tskhinvali
Commander of Russia's Airborne Infantry Forces Valeri Evtukhovich said "Russia would not allow hurting of citizens living in South Ossetia" and that Airborne Infantry Forces were ready to defend the Russian peacekeepers. Eduard Kokoiti said "North Caucasian volunteers" could join the fight against Georgia. Tskhinvali announced the evacuation of women and children.
August 3 - Timeline
According to Georgian authorities, Ossetian forces opened fire on a Georgian police checkpoint near the village of Dvani. Tskhinvali accused Tbilisi of firing in the direction of Muguti village. Georgian intelligence reported that units of the Reconnaissance Battalion of Russia's 58th Army entered the Java district through the Roki tunnel. Minister of the Interior of de-facto South Ossetia threatened to bomb Georgian towns situated south of Tskhinvali namely "Gori, Kareli and one of the resort areas".
August 4 - Timeline
A firefight between the Tskhinvali-controlled village of Dmenisi and Georgian peacekeepers deployed on Sarabuki Heights broke out. Eduard Kokoiti said 300 volunteers have already arrived from North Ossetia in order to help South Ossetian armed forces and that 2,000 more were on their way. Leader of Russian Cossacks and Member of Russian Parliament Viktor Vodolatski said the Cossacks were ready to assist the "South Ossetian state" at a word.
August 5 - Russian military forces occupy the Roki tunnel
Two Georgian peacekeepers were wounded during the firefight on Sarabuki Heights. Tskhinvali said the first groups of "volunteers" had arrived from Russia and that volunteer groups of Don Cossacks were being formed. Russia deployed units of the 33rd Motorized Infantry Company in South Ossetia, while the 135th and 693rd Motorized Regiments were stationed on the Russian side of the Roki tunnel.
August 6 - Battle for Sarabuki Heights
The intensive fire was opened in the direction of Avnevi, Dvani, Eredvi, Khetagurovo, Nuli, Prinevi, Ubiati and Zemo Prisi villages. The fire was opened against the Georgian peacekeeping checkpoint on Sarabuki Heights. Three Georgian peacekeepers were wounded. Tskhinvali refuses to participate in the de-escalation talks planned for August 7.
August 7 - Timeline
Russian military forces and equipment enter Georgia via the Roki tunnel. Georgian Ministry of the Interior said the bombing of the Georgian villages of Nuli and Avnevi resumed at around noon. After talking with Eduard Kokoiti Sergei Baghapsh said North Caucasus Military District Battalion had entered the Tskhinvali region. Two Georgian peacekeepers were killed and five were wounded in the village of Avnevi. 14:30 - Georgian Ministry of Defense orders the country's military forces to move toward Tskhinvali. The head of de facto South Ossetia's Security Council accuses Georgia of launching "a military aggression against South Ossetia". 19:10 - President of Georgia announces a ceasefire, expresses his readiness for concessions, and urges Tskhinvali and Moscow to resume talks. 20:30 - The ceasefire agreement was violated, and Avnevi, Prisi, Tamarasheni, and other villages come under fire. Russian forces started to invade Georgia via the Roki tunnel. US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Bryza urges Georgian officials to not confront Russian military forces. 23:35 - President Saakashvili orders the United Headquarters of Defense Ministry to stop the movement of Russian Federation's army forces; destroy positions from where the fire was opened against civilians, Georgian peacekeepers, and police officers; protect the peaceful population of Tskhinvali region.
August 8 - Tbilisi controls a large part of South Ossetia
According to de-facto South Ossetian authorities, Georgian forces "launched an attack against Tskhinvali" by 01:00. According to Russian peacekeeping forces, both sides were using heavy military equipment and Tskhinvali was being bombed from "Grad" multiple rocket launchers. Saakashvili says Tskhinvali and most of the region except for Java district are under Georgian control. "This was a heavy and very difficult battle for each building. Our soldiers demonstrated great heroism." President Saakashvili said Georgian armed forces launched their attack after Ossetian separatists answered Georgian peaceful initiatives with the bombing of Georgian villages.
August 8 - Bombing of Gori
Two Russian military planes dropped five bombs on Gori. "We will not let anyone hurt our peacekeepers and Russian citizens," - Russian Defense Ministry's statement read. President Saakashvili says 150 Russian tanks, armored vehicles, and other types of armored equipment "were entering the Georgian territory [South Ossetia] through Roki tunnel right at this moment."
August 9 - Russia's large-scale military invasion of Georgia
Dozens of people were killed as a result of bombing of Kombinat district and military base in Gori as well as Poti port and Senaki military base by Russian military planes. Kodori Valley was bombed by Russian planes, while Abkhazian armed forces launched a land operation in the Valley. UN Security Council that convened in New York failed to agree on the statement regarding the situation in South Ossetia. Russian Ambassador to UN Vitaly Churkin accused Georgia of "ethnic cleansing". Georgian Ambassador to UN Irakli Alasania said Russia was using that absurd allegation as a pretext for "justifying its military aggression against Georgia." President Saakashvili applied to the Parliament with a request to declare the state of emergency on the whole territory of Georgia.
August 10 - Russian planes bomb Tbilisi airport
On August 10 at 19:00 Russian planes bombed the territory of Tbilisi International Airport. Russian bombers also dropped bombs in Anaklia. Nobody was hurt as a result of those attacks. A few hours before the attack Georgia offered a ceasefire to Russia and expressed its readiness to renew negotiations. Chairperson of Georgian National Security Council Alexander Lomaia said Russian bombs in Tbilisi were a proof that Russia's invasion of Georgia was not only about Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
August 11- Explosion at the Tbilisi Sea
Russian bombers attacked the Tbilisi Sea at a radiolactic station on the Makhata Mount near Tbilisi at 11:00 am on August 11, 2013. The station served Tbilisi International Airport. There were no casualties, and the second bomb was dropped by the Russian airplane in an unsettled area in Tbilisi.
"There is no threat to Tbilisi at all, at least till tomorrow," Saakashvili said. "Please stay at home, we will inform you about the situation in every hour."
August 12 - George W. Bush addresses Moscow
„I am deeply concerned with the news coming from the conflict zone about advancement of Russian military forces, about their attack on Gori and targeting of Georgian capital Tbilisi," - George W. Bush said during a briefing in the White House.
August 12 - Timeline
Tens of thousands of people gather in Tbilisi in order to express solidarity. The protest rally is accompanied with music and songs. Some citizens regard that form of support towards the authorities inappropriate and severely criticize the rally. Presidents of Estonia, Lithuania, Ukraine and Poland as well as Latvian Prime Minister arrive in Georgia to demonstrate solidarity with and support to Georgia. The same night Russian helicopter opens fire on a civilian minibus near Gori - nine passengers are killed. Eight civilians were killed and 15 were injured during the bombing of Gori's central square. De-facto Abkhazian authorities say they have a full control of Upper Abkhazia (Kodori Valley). "Kodori Valley is fully deserted. This is a classic example of ethnic cleansing," - Mikheil Saakashvili says. On August 12 during a meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy Russian President Dmitry Medvedev supports a six-point plan elaborated by the EU concerning the cessation of hostilities in Georgia. Sarkozy travels to Tbilisi from Moscow. Saakashvili signs the ceasefire agreement the same day.
August 13 - Movements of Russian troops
Neither Tbilisi nor Moscow confirms that Russian troops are planning to move towards Tbilisi. "Their military equipment is entering our towns and villages, but there are no grounds for panic," - Deputy Minister of the Interior of Georgia Eka Zghuladze said, "No heavy equipment or convoy has started marching on Tbilisi." Russian troops are deliberately destroying infrastructure of the occupied areas, including in Gori.
August 16- More than 60 thousand internally displaced person
Number of IDPs in Tbilisi reached 60 thousand. They were housed in up to 500 buildings, mainly kindergartens and schools. These figures do not include the IDPs from Kodori Valley, who were housed in west Georgia.
August 22 - More than 120 thousand internally displaced persons
Up to 120 thousand people flee from their homes. Main road connecting eastern and western parts of Georgia was blocked by Russian troops till August 22 when they left Gori. Even after the road was reopened Minister of the Interior Vano Merabishvili urged the population to refrain from traveling on that road as the police were checking nearby bridges and strategic sites for mines. Russian soldiers opened a checkpoint in the village of Karaleti - 5 kilometers from Gori.
August 24 - US ships in the Black Sea
US destroyer USS McFaul entered Batumi port on August 24 and brought more than 70 metric tons of humanitarian aid. Meanwhile, Poti situated 75 kilometers from that place was still under Russian control. Poti port's infrastructure was damaged as a result of Russian aerial attacks. Two more American ships are expected in Georgian territorial waters.
August 26 - Recognition of Abkhazia's and South Ossetia's independence
Russian President signs documents on recognition of Abkhazia's and South Ossetia's independence. Dmitry Medvedev says Russia's recognition is based on the results of referendums. Before that, he meets with the de-facto presidents of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. On August 26 Mikheil Saakashvili said Russia had "made an unimaginable strategic mistake", which now had to be answered by the West.
August 29 - Burnt villages on the map
UNOSAT publishes satellite images showing the burnt Georgian villages in Tskhinvali region. Human Rights Watch says Tamarasheni, Kekhvi, Kvemo Achabeti, Zemo Achabeti and Kurta are destroyed as a result of fire and bombings. The map shows fires on August 10, 12, 13, 17, 19 and 22, whereas hostilities in the area ceased on August 10.
September 8 - Russia violates the agreement
French and Russian Presidents agreed that Russia would withdraw its forces from areas adjacent to Abkhazia and South Ossetia within a month and that UN and OSCE observers in Georgia would carry on implementing their mandates. However, Russia still doesn't observe the terms of the agreement and achieves withdrawal of UN and OSCE missions from the conflict zones.
September 17 - Moscow's agreement with Sukhumi and Tskhinvali
Russian President signed an agreement on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance with Abkhazian and South Ossetian de-facto Presidents. "We will provide all kinds of assistance to each other, including a military one." - Medvedev said.
October 8 - Russian troops leave Samegrelo
In the morning Russian troops leave the checkpoints near South Ossetia as well as those situated in Samegrelo. In Samegrelo Russian troops withdraw from villages situated in Tsalenjikha, Chkhorotsku and Zugdidi district. According to media, Russian military convoys were headed to Gali district via Enguri bridge.
October 15 - Aborted negotiation
On October 15 Geneva talks were stopped and postponed.
October 22 - $4.55 billion for Georgia
Georgia's partner countries and international donors allocated a total of $4.55 billion to Georgia for post-war rehabilitation efforts.
October 23 - Law on Occupied Territories
Georgian Parliament passed a Law on Abkhazian and South Ossetian Occupied Territories. The Law restricts free movement and economic activities in those territories. Foreign nationals are allowed to enter those territories only from the Georgian-controlled areas.
November 19 - Second round of Geneva talks
Second round of Geneva talks took place with the participation of representatives of Georgia, Russia, United States and also two separatist regions with the mediation of EU, UN and OSCE.
December 24 - 127 thousand people fled their homes
127 thousand people were forced to flee their homes due to the August War. "About 73 thousand of them will likely be able to return to their houses before winter" - UNHCR reports.