World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

South Ossetia

Republic of South Ossetia

  • Республикӕ Хуссар Ирыстон (Ossetic)
    Respublikæ Xussar Iryston

  • სამხრეთ ოსეთის რესპუბლიკა  (Georgian)
    Samkhreti Oseti Resp'ublik

  • Республика Южная Осетия (Russian)
    Respublika Yuzhnaya Osetiya
Flag Emblem
Anthem: National Anthem of South Ossetia
South Ossetia (green), Georgia, and Abkhazia (light grey).
Map of South Ossetia.
Map of South Ossetia.
Capital Tskhinvali
Official languages
Recognised regional languages Georgian
Government Semi-presidential republic
 -  President Leonid Tibilov
 -  Prime Minister Domenty Kulumbegov
Legislature Parliament
Independence from Georgia
 -  Declared 21 December 1991[1] 
 -  Recognized 26 August 2008 (limited) 
 -  Total 3,900 km2
1,506 sq mi
 -  Water (%) negligible
 -  2013 estimate 51,547[2]
 -  Density 13/km2
33.7/sq mi
Currency Russian ruble (RUB)
Time zone MSK (UTC+3)
Drives on the right
a. Ossetian and Russian languages are official languages[3]

South Ossetia ([4]) or Tskhinvali Region[nb 1] is a

  • President of Republic of South Ossetia (in Russian)
  • Crisis profile, Georgia, Abkhazia, S. Ossetia From Reuters Alertnet
  • BBC overview of South Ossetia
  • Border South Ossetia for use in Google Earth.

External links

  1. ^
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ Presidential Elections in South Ossetia – Plan B
    The first round of voting was accompanied by a referendum in which the Ossetians were to decide whether Russian should become the second official language of South Ossetia. Nearly 85 per cent of the voters supported the referendum.
  4. ^
  5. ^ USSR Atlas - in Russian, Moscow 1984
  6. ^ a b c d
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ President of Russia
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ a b
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ OSCE: De Gucht Discusses Montenegro Referendum, Frozen Conflicts,, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, May 2006
  19. ^ Vladimir Socor, Frozen Conflicts in the Black Sea-South Caucasus Region at the Wayback Machine (archived June 5, 2013), IASPS Policy Briefings, 1 March 2004
  20. ^
  21. ^ (Russian) С. А. Белокуров. Сношения России с Кавказом, Москва, 1889, с. 508
  22. ^ (Russian) Гюльденштедт. Путешествие в Грузию, Тбилиси, 1962
  23. ^ (Russian) Гильденштедт И. А. Путешествие по Кавказу в 1770—1773 гг. — СПб.: Петербургское Востоковедение, 2002
  24. ^ a b
  25. ^ a b c d
  26. ^
  27. ^
  28. ^ a b D.M. Lang, History of Modern Georgia, 1963
  29. ^
  30. ^
  31. ^ Hastening The End of the Empire, Time Magazine, 28 January 1991
  32. ^
  33. ^ a b c
  34. ^ a b
  36. ^ The independence precedent: If Kosovo goes free The Economist, Nov 29th 2007
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^ Resolution on Peacekeepers Leaves Room for More Diplomacy. Civil Georgia. 2006-02-16.
  42. ^
  43. ^ (MosNews)U.S. Senator Urges Russian Peacekeepers’ Withdrawal From Georgian Breakaway Republics..
  44. ^ Russia 'not neutral' in Black Sea conflict, EU says, EUobserver, 10 October 2006.
  45. ^
  46. ^ a b
  47. ^
  48. ^
  49. ^
  50. ^
  51. ^
  52. ^
  53. ^
  54. ^
  55. ^
  56. ^
  57. ^ a b
  58. ^
  59. ^
  60. ^
  61. ^
  62. ^
  63. ^
  64. ^
  65. ^
  66. ^
  67. ^
  68. ^
  69. ^
  70. ^
  71. ^
  72. ^
  73. ^
  74. ^
  75. ^
  76. ^
  77. ^
  78. ^
  79. ^
  80. ^
  81. ^
  82. ^
  83. ^ Crisis group 2007 Appendix D
  84. ^ a b c
  85. ^
  86. ^
  87. ^ a b c
  88. ^ a b
  89. ^
  90. ^
  91. ^ S.Ossetia Says ‘International Observers’ Arrive to Monitor Polls,, 11 November 2006
  92. ^
  93. ^ a b
  94. ^
  95. ^
  96. ^
  97. ^ International Crisis Group - Georgia’s South Ossetia Conflict: Make Haste Slowl
  98. ^
  99. ^ Commission to Work on S.Ossetia Status. Civil Georgia 13 July 2007.
  100. ^ a b
  101. ^
  102. ^
  103. ^
  104. ^
  105. ^ Reuters, UPDATE 1-EU faces tough test of unity on Russia at the Wayback Machine (archived June 3, 2010), Forbes, 31 August 2008.
  106. ^ AP, Russia support for separatists could have ripples, New York Times, 31 August 2008.
  107. ^
  108. ^ a b
  109. ^ Damien McElroy. South Ossetian police tell Georgians to take a Russian passport, or leave their homes. The Daily Telegraph, 31 August 2008.
  110. ^
  111. ^ a b
  112. ^
  113. ^
  114. ^
  115. ^
  116. ^
  117. ^
  118. ^ Yuschenko, Saakashvili open new building of Georgian Embassy in Kyiv, Interfax-Ukraine (November 19, 2009).
  119. ^ Reuters 8 August 2008: Georgia-Russia conflict could be drawn out
  120. ^ OSCE, 13th Meeting of the Ministerial Council (5 and 6 December 2005). Statement on Georgia (MC.DOC/4/05),
  121. ^ Civil Georgia, [S.Ossetia Sets Repeat Independence Referendum], 2006-09-11
  122. ^ Council of Europe Secretary General calls for talks instead of "referendum" in the Georgian region of South Ossetia. Council of Europe Information Office in Georgia. Retrieved on 13-09-2006.
  123. ^
  124. ^
  125. ^ Civil Georgia: "MPs Pass Draft Law on S. Ossetia with Final Hearing", 13 April 2007
  126. ^ Civil Georgia: "Sanakoev Appointed as Head of S.Ossetia Administration", 10 May 2007
  127. ^
  128. ^
  129. ^ Kremlin favorite faces run-off in South Ossetia elections, Deutsche Welle, 14.11.2011
  130. ^ Кандидатка против всех (Candidate Against All),, 14.11.2011
  131. ^
  132. ^
  133. ^ G. Tsuladze, N. Maglaperidze, A. Vadachkoria, Eds.,Demographic Yearbook of Georgia: 2001, Georgian Academy of Sciences: Institute of Demographic and Sociological Research (Tbilisi, 2002). This source reports that in January 2002 there were 37,000 Ossetians living in Georgia but excluding South Ossetia.
  134. ^
  135. ^
  136. ^
  137. ^ a b
  138. ^
  139. ^ Census results in South Ossetia: 1926, 1939, 1959, 1970, 1979 (Russian)
  140. ^ Mamuka Areshidze, "Current Economic Causes of Conflict in Georgia", unpublished report for UK Department for International Development (DFID), 2002. Cited from Georgia: Avoiding War in South Ossetia by International Crisis Group, 26.11.2006
  141. ^
  142. ^ a b c d e
  143. ^
  144. ^ a b


  1. ^ South Ossetia (სამხრეთი ოსეთი, Samxreti Oseti; Russian: Южная Осетия, Yuzhnaya Osetiya)
    Tskhinvali Region ( )Tskhinvalskiy region, Цхинвальский регион: Russian; Tsxinvalis regioni, ცხინვალის რეგიონი


See also


The country's principal university is South Ossetia State University in Tskhinvali.[144] After the Russo-Georgian War in 2008, education officials attempted to place most college-bound students from South Ossetia in Russian post-secondary education institutions.[144]



The economy is currently very dependent on funding from Russia.[14][143]

Russia planned to spend 10 billion rubles in the restoration of South Ossetia in 2009.[142]

The South Ossetian authorities are planning to improve finances by boosting the local production of flour and thus reducing the need for flour imports. For this purpose, the area planted with wheat was increased tenfold in 2008 from 130 hectares to 1,500 hectares. The wheat harvest in 2008 was expected to be 2,500 tons of grain. The South Ossetian Agriculture ministry also imported some tractors in 2008, and was expecting delivery of more farm machinery in 2009.[142]

Before the 2008 South Ossetia war, South Ossetia's industry consisted of 22 small factories, with a total production of 61.6 million rubles in 2006. In 2007, only 7 factories were functioning. In March, 2009, it was reported that most of the production facilities were standing idle and were in need of repairs. Even successful factories have a shortage of workers, are in debt and have a shortage of working capital.[142] One of the largest local enterprises is the Emalprovod factory, which has 130 employees.[142]

South Ossetia's poverty threshold stood at 3,062 rubles a month in the fourth quarter of 2007, or 23.5 percent below Russia’s average, while South Ossetians have incomparably smaller incomes.[142]

President Eduard Kokoity has admitted that his country is seriously dependent on Russian economic assistance.[141]

Following a war with Georgia in the 1990s, South Ossetia struggled economically. South Ossetian GDP was estimated at US$15 million (US$250 per capita) in a work published in 2002.[140] Employment and supplies are scarce. Additionally, Georgia cut off supplies of electricity to the region, which forced the South Ossetian government to run an electric cable through North Ossetia. The majority of the population survives on subsistence farming. Virtually the only significant economic asset that South Ossetia possesses is control of the Roki Tunnel that used to link Russia and Georgia, from which the South Ossetian government reportedly obtains as much as a third of its budget by levying customs duties on freight traffic.

The Dzuarikau–Tskhinvali pipeline, delivering natural gas from Russia to South Ossetia, went online in 2009.


Ethnicity 1926 census 1939 census 1959 census 1970 census 1979 census 1989 census 2007 estimate 2012 estimate
Ossetians 60,351 (69.1%) 72,266 (68.1%) 63,698 (65.8%) 66,073 (66.5%) 65,077 (66.4%) 65,200 (65.9%) 47,000 (67.1%) 45,950 (89.1%)
Georgians 23,538 (26.9%) 27,525 (25.9%) 26,584 (27.5%) 28,125 (28.3%) 28,187 (28.8%) 28,700 (29.0%) 17,500 (25.0%) 4,590 (8.9%)
Russians 157 (0.2%) 2,111 (2.0%) 2,380 (2.5%) 1,574 (1.6%) 2,046 (2.1%) 2,128 (2.1%) 2,100 (3.0%) 515 (1.0%)
Armenians 1,374 (1.6%) 1,537 (1.4%) 1,555 (1.6%) 1,254 (1.3%) 953 (1.0%) 871 (0.9%) 900 (1.3%)
Jews 1,739 (2.0%) 1,979 (1.9%) 1,723 (1.8%) 1,485 (1.5%) 654 (0.7%) 648 (0.7%) 650 (0.9%)
Others 216 (0.2%) 700 (0.7%) 867 (0.9%) 910 (0.9%) 1,071 (1.1%) 1,453 (1.5%) 1,850 (2.6%) 515 (1.0%)
Total 87,375 106,118 96,807 99,421 97,988 99,000 70,000 51,572

Christianity is the major religion practiced by the Ossetians but Islam and the neopagan religion Ætsæg Din ("Right Faith") also have followers.[138]

2009 Population Estimate: During the war, according to Georgian officials, 15,000 Georgians moved to Georgia proper; South Ossetian officials indicate that 30,000 Ossetians fled to North Ossetia, and a total of 500 citizens of South Ossetia were killed.[135][136] This left the estimated population at 54,500. However Russia's reconstruction plan involving 600 million dollars in aid to South Ossetia may have spurred immigration into the de facto independent republic, especially with Russia's movement of 3,700 soldiers into South Ossetia, in order to prevent further incursions.[137] RIA Novosti places the population of South Ossetia at 80,000, although this figure is probably too optimistic.[137]

Because the statistical office of Georgia was not able to conduct the 2002 Georgian census in South Ossetia, the present composition of the population of South Ossetia is unknown,[133] although according to some estimates there were 47,000 ethnic Ossetians and 17,500 ethnic Georgians in South Ossetia in 2007.[134]

Before the Languages of the Caucasus.)

Palm Sunday procession in Tskhinvali, April 2009.


The republic held its fourth presidential election in November 2011. Eduard Kokoity was not eligible to run for president for a third time, per the constitution. Anatoly Bibilov, supported by Russian authorities and Alla Dzhioeva, backed by main South Ossetian opposition figures, got about a quarter of the vote each and participated in the run-off vote.[129][130] A run-off was won by Dzhioyeva on November 27, 2011, but the results were invalidated by the Supreme Court of South Ossetia.[131] Leonid Tibilov won the 2012 election over David Sanakoyev after a run-off.[132]

[128] said that "None of the two alternatives do we consider legitimate [in South Ossetia]."[127] An EU fact-finding team visited the region in January 2007.

Initially, Sanakoyev's administration was known as "the Alternative Government of South Ossetia", but during the course of 2007 the central authorities of [125] On 10 May 2007 Dmitry Sanakoyev was appointed head of the provisional administrative entity in South Ossetia.[126]

High voter turnout was reported by the alternative electoral commission, which estimated over 42,000 voters from both Ossetian (Java district and Tskhinvali) and Georgian (Eredvi, Tamarasheni, etc.) communities of South Ossetia and Sanakoyev reportedly received 96% of the votes. Another referendum was organized shortly after asking for the start of negotiations with Georgia on a federal arrangement for South Ossetia received 94% support. [93] The group headed by the former defence minister and then prime minister of the secessionist government

The People of South Ossetia for Peace was founded in October 2006 by ethnic Ossetians who were outspoken critics and presented a serious opposition to secessionist authorities of Eduard Kokoity.

[124] Ethnic Ossetians and Russians living in South Ossetia nearly unanimously approved a referendum on 12 November 2006 opting for independence from Georgia. The referendum was hugely popular, winning between 98 and 99 percent of the vote; flag waving and celebrations were seen across South Ossetia, but elsewhere observers were less enthusiastic. Ethnic Georgians living in South Ossetia boycotted the referendum. International critics claimed that the move could worsen regional tensions, and the Tbilisi government thoroughly discounted the results. "Everybody needs to understand, once and for all, that no amount of referenda or elections will move Georgia to give up that which belongs to the Georgian people by God's will," declared

Peter Semneby also added that this referendum would not contribute to the peaceful conflict resolution process in South Ossetia. [123], said: "results of the South Ossetian independence referendum will have no meaning for the European Union".Moscow, while visiting Peter Semneby, South Caucasus Special Representative to the European Union On 13 September 2006 [122] On September 11, 2006, the South Ossetian Information and Press Committee announced that the republic would hold an

President Eduard Kokoity voting in the 2009 elections.

Republic of South Ossetia

authorities. de facto which was subsequently rejected by the South Ossetian [120] The political dispute has yet to be resolved and the South Ossetian separatist authorities govern the region with effective independence from Tbilisi. Although talks have been held periodically between the two sides, little progress was made under the government of

Until the population transfers on a large scale.

South Ossetia
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
South Ossetia
See also


In November 2009, during the opening ceremony of a new Georgian Embassy building in Mikheil Saakashvili stated that residents of South Ossetia and Abkhazia could also use its facilities: "I would like to assure you, my dear friends, that this is your home, as well, and here you will always be able to find support and understanding".[118]

The law says that the Russian Federation – the state which has carried out military occupation – is fully responsible for the violation of human rights in Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The Russian Federation, according to the document, is also responsible for compensation of material and moral damage inflicted on Georgian citizens, stateless persons and foreign citizens, who are in Georgia and enter the occupied territories with appropriate permits. The law also says that de facto state agencies and officials operating in the occupied territories are regarded by Georgia as illegal. The law will remain in force until "the full restoration of Georgian jurisdiction" over the breakaway regions is realised.

The legislation, however, also lists "special" cases in which entry into the breakaway regions will not be regarded as illegal. It stipulates that a special permit on entry into the breakaway regions can be issued if the trip there "serves Georgia’s state interests; peaceful resolution of the conflict; de-occupation or humanitarian purposes." The law also bans any type of economic activity – entrepreneurial or non- entrepreneurial, if such activities require permits, licenses or registration in accordance with Georgian legislation. It also bans air, sea and railway communications and international transit via the regions, mineral exploration and money transfers. The provision covering economic activities is retroactive, going back to 1990.

In late October 2008 President Saakashvili signed into law legislation on the occupied territories passed by the Georgian Parliament. The law covers the breakaway regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (territories of former South Ossetian Autonomous Oblast).[115][116][117] The law spells out restrictions on free movement and economic activity in the territories. In particular, according to the law, foreign citizens should enter the two breakaway regions only through Georgia proper. Entry into Abkhazia should be carried out from the Zugdidi District and into South Ossetia from the Gori District. The major road leading to South Ossetia from the rest of Georgia passes through the Gori District.

Landscape in South Ossetia's Dzhava District.

Law on Occupied Territories of Georgia

The South Ossetian and Russian presidents signed an "alliance and integration" treaty on 18 March 2015.[111] The agreement includes provisions to incorporate the South Ossetian military into Russia's armed forces, integrate the customs service of South Ossetia into that of Russia's, and commit Russia to paying state worker salaries in South Ossetia at rates equal to those in the United States and European Union said they would not recognise it.[113][114]

On August 30, 2008, Tarzan Kokoity, the Deputy Speaker of South Ossetia's parliament, announced that the region would soon be absorbed into Russia, so that South and North Ossetians could live together in one united Russian state.[108] Russian and South Ossetian forces began giving residents in North Ossetia in the Russian Federation.[108][110]

Integration with Russia

[107] recognised South Ossetia on September 10, 2009, becoming the third UN member state to do so.Venezuela [100] Several days later, Nicaragua became the second country to recognize South Ossetia.[106] said the conflict could encourage separatist movements in other former Soviet states along Russia's western border.Richard Holbrooke Former US envoy [105] The EU's diplomatic response to the news was delayed by disagreements between Eastern European states, the UK wanting a harsher response and Germany, France and other states' desire not to isolate Russia.[104][103][102][101] Following the

On July 13, 2007, Georgia set up a state commission, chaired by the Prime Minister [99]

In April 2007, Georgia created the President of Georgia as the Head of South Ossetian Provisional Administrative Entity.

Parallel to the secessionist held referendum and elections, to Dmitry Sanakoyev as the alternative President of South Ossetia.[93] The alternative elections of Sanakoyev claimed full support of the ethnic Georgian population.

The Tbilisi.[92] The European Union, OSCE and NATO condemned the referendum.

Russian Presidential Decree No. 1261 recognising South Ossetian independence.

Political status

South Ossetia's economy is primarily agricultural, although less than 10% of South Ossetia's land area is cultivated. Cereals, fruit and vines are the major produce. Forestry and cattle industries are also maintained. A number of industrial facilities also exist, particularly around the capital, Tskhinvali.

The average temperature in South Ossetia in January is around +4 degrees Celsius, and the average temperature in July is around +20.3 degrees Celsius. The average yearly liquid precipitation in South Ossetia is around 598 millimeters.[84] In general, Summer temperatures average 20 °C (68 °F) to 24 °C (75.2 °F) across much of South Ossetia, and Winter temperatures average 2 °C (35.6 °F) to 4 °C (39.2 °F). Humidity is relatively low and rainfall across South Ossetia averages 500 to 800 mm (19.7 to 31.5 in) per year. Alpine and highland regions have distinct microclimates though. At higher elevations, precipitation is sometimes twice as heavy as in the eastern plains of Georgia. Alpine conditions begin at about 2,100 m (6,890 ft), and above 3,600 m (11,811 ft) snow and ice are present year-round.

The foothills and mountainous areas (including the Greater Caucasus Mountains) experience cool, wet summers and snowy winters, with snow cover often exceeding 2 meters in many regions. The penetration of humid air masses from the Black Sea to the West of South Ossetia is often blocked by the Likhi mountain range. The wettest periods of the year in South Ossetia generally occur during Spring and Autumn while the Winter and Summer months tend to be the driest. Elevation plays an important role in South Ossetia where climatic conditions above 1,500 metres (4,921 ft) are considerably colder than in any lower-lying areas. The regions that lie above 2,000 metres (6,562 ft) frequently experience frost even during the Summer months.

South Ossetia's climate is affected by continental climate.

Most of South Ossetia is in the Kura Basin with the rest of it in the Black Sea basin. The Likhi and Racha ridges act as divide separating these two basins. Major rivers in South Ossetia include the Greater and Little Liakhvi, Ksani, Medzhuda, Tlidon, Canal Saltanis, Ptsa River and host of other tributaries.[87]

The term Likhi Range. The overall region can be characterized as being made up of various, interconnected mountain ranges (largely of volcanic origin) and plateaus that do not exceed 3,400 meters (11,155 ft) in elevation.

Nearby 30% are located within Georgia which South Ossetia forms a part of.

South Ossetia covers an area of about 3,900 km2 (1,506 sq mi),[86] separated by the mountains from the more populous North Ossetia (which is part of Russia) and extending southwards almost to the above sea level, and its highest point is Mount Khalatsa at 3,938 m (12,920 ft) above sea level.[87]

The Greater Caucasus Mountain Range forms the northern border of South Ossetia with Russia, and the main roads through the mountain range into Russian territory lead through the Russian military in the 2008 South Ossetia war because it is the only direct route through the Caucasus Mountains.

South Ossetia is in the very heart of the Caucasus at the juncture of Asia and Europe, and it occupies the southern slopes of the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range and the foothills' part of the Kartalin Valley.[84] South Ossetia is a very mountainous region. The Likhi Range is roughly in the center of South Ossetia,[85] and the plateau that's also roughly in the center of South Ossetia is called Iberia.

Relief map of South Ossetia.

Geography and climate

[82][81] Since the war, Georgia has maintained that [80] In response, the Georgian government cut diplomatic relations with Russia.[79] Russia recognised Abkhazia and South Ossetia on 26 August.

[78] Through mediation by

[75][74] Both during and after the war, South Ossetian authorities and irregular militia conducted a campaign of

In five days of fighting, the Russian forces captured Tskhinvali, pushed back Georgian troops, and largely destroyed Georgia’s military infrastructure using Gori, Senaki, and Zugdidi.[69]

After the heights around Tskhinvali were secured, Georgian troops with tanks and artillery support entered the town.[57] Georgian shelling left parts of Tskhinvali in ruins.[61] According to Russian military commander, over 10 Russian peacekeepers were killed on 8 August.[62] That day Russia officially sent troops across the Georgian border into South Ossetia,[63] claiming to be defending both peacekeepers and South Ossetian civilians.[64] Russia accused Georgia of committing "genocide".[65] Russian authorities claimed that the civilian casualties in Tskhinvali amounted up to 2,000.[66] These high casualty figures were later revised down to 162 casualties.[67]

On 7 August, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, ordered a unilateral [58][59] The official reason given by Tbilisi for this was to "restore constitutional order" in the region.[60]


2008 war

[45] The Georgian government protested against the allegedly increasing Russian economic and political presence in the region and against the uncontrolled military of the South Ossetian side. It also considered the

Hostage takings, shootouts and occasional bombings left dozens dead and wounded. A ceasefire deal was reached on 13 August though it was repeatedly violated. [40] Since June 2004, serious tensions began to rise as the Georgian authorities strengthened their efforts to bring the region back under their rule, by establishing an

Following the 2003 Adolf Hitler's quotation from 1932: "Only through the force of weapons" could lost territory be regained.[39]

On 24 June 1992, Shevardnadze and the South Ossetian government signed the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) set up a mission in Georgia to monitor the peacekeeping operation. From then until mid-2004 South Ossetia was generally peaceful.

[33] In late 1991,

On 29 April 1991, the western part of South Ossetia was affected by an earthquake, which killed 200 and left 300 families homeless.

As a result of the war, approximately 1,000 died and about 100,000 ethnic Ossetians fled the territory and Georgia proper, most across the border into North Ossetia. A further 23,000 ethnic Georgians fled South Ossetia and settled in other parts of Georgia.[35] Many South Ossetians were resettled in uninhabited areas of North Ossetia from which the Ingush had been expelled by Stalin in 1944, leading to conflicts between Ossetians and Ingush over the right of residence in former Ingush territory.

[33] Violent conflict broke out toward the end of 1990. The

In November, 1990, [33]

The Georgian Supreme Council adopted a law barring regional parties in summer 1990. This was interpreted by Ossetians as a move against Ademon Nykhas and led to Ossetians proclaiming South Ossetia as the South Ossetian Democratic Republic on 20 September 1990,[30][31] fully sovereign within the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). Ossetians boycotted subsequent Georgian parliamentary elections and held their own contest in December.

[6]) was created in 1988. On 10 November 1989, the South Ossetian regional council asked the Georgian Supreme Council to upgrade the region to the status of an "Ademon Nykhas The influential South Ossetian Popular Front (

Tensions in the region began to rise amid rising nationalism among both Georgians and Ossetians in 1989. Before this, the two communities of the South Ossetian Autonomous Oblast of the Georgian SSR had been living in peace with each other except for the 1918-1920 events. Both ethnicities have had a high level of interaction and high rates of intermarriage.[29]


Georgian-Ossetian conflict

Historical Ossetia in North Caucasus did not have its own political entity before 1924, when the North Ossetian Autonomous Oblast was created.

[25] Although the Ossetians had their own language (

[25] The Soviet Georgian government established after the

[6] The Georgian Kingdom of

South Ossetia as a part of the Soviet Union

Ossetian migration to Georgian areas continued in the 19th and 20th centuries, when Georgia was part of the Russian Empire and Ossetian settlements in Trialeti, Borjomi, Bakuriani and Kakheti emerged as well.[24]

[24] The

Medieval and early modern period

Map of Georgia highlighting South Ossetia (purple) and Abkhazia (green).
Topographic map of South Ossetia (Polish transcription).
Fragment of the historical map by J. H. Colton. The map depicts Caucasus region in 1856. Modern South Ossetia is not labeled. Modern North Ossetia is labeled as "Ossia".
Historical Russian map of the Caucasus region at the beginning of the 19th century
Map of the territory of modern South Ossetia within medieval Alania (10th–12th century), according to Ossetian historian Ruslan Suleymanovich Bzarov.



  • History 1
    • Medieval and early modern period 1.1
    • South Ossetia as a part of the Soviet Union 1.2
    • Georgian-Ossetian conflict 1.3
      • 1989–2008 1.3.1
      • 2008 war 1.3.2
  • Geography and climate 2
  • Political status 3
    • Integration with Russia 3.1
    • Law on Occupied Territories of Georgia 3.2
  • Politics 4
    • Republic of South Ossetia 4.1
  • Demographics 5
  • Economy 6
  • Culture 7
    • Education 7.1
  • Gallery 8
  • See also 9
  • Notes 10
  • References 11
  • External links 12

South Ossetia, Transnistria, Nagorno-Karabakh, and Abkhazia are post-Soviet "frozen conflict" zones.[18][19]

In the wake of the 2008 South Ossetia War, occupied by the Russian military. South Ossetia relies heavily on military, political and financial aid from Russia.[14][15][16] Russia does not allow European Union Monitoring Mission monitors to enter South Ossetia.[17]

South Ossetia Russia–Georgia war, during which Ossetian and Russian forces gained full de facto control of the territory of the former South Ossetian Autonomous Oblast.


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.