Russia recognises Georgian rebels. The Kremlin formally recognises the independence of Georgia’s breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. [BBC News]
I’m sure there are a lot of very happy people in South Ossetia and Abkhazia today. The BBC article also contains something which is actually quite important, although it’s only mentioned briefly and then ignored:
[President Dmitry Medvedev] said Moscow now felt obliged to recognise South Ossetia and Abkhazia as other countries had done with Kosovo.
The Russians have been saying all along that they consider the fate of Kosovo, South Ossetia, and Abkhazia to be linked. The Evil Empire recognized Kosovo as an “independent” nation in February over Russian objections, so it was inevitable that Russia would do the same for South Ossetia and Abkhazia. The Georgian invasion at most sped things up a little. I do find it interesting, though, that the mainstream media (and for that matter, many bloggers) have been doing their very best to ignore Kosovo while covering the war.