Military of South Ossetia
|Military of South Ossetia|
|Domestic suppliers||South Ossetia|
|Foreign suppliers|| Russia
The Military of South Ossetia is the military of the breakaway republic of South Ossetia, whose independence is recognized by Russia, Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Nauru, but which Georgia considers to be its territory and occupied by Russia. The force numbers about 2,500 men, or 16,000, including reservists.
2008 South Ossetia war
The South Ossetian military fought against the Georgian forces in the 2008 South Ossetia war. At the time of the major Georgian offensive, the bulk of the Ossetian force was concentrated in the settlement of Java to the north of Tskhinvali. According to Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, what thwarted the Georgian operation in the end was the resistance offered by peacekeepers and lightly armed South Ossetian units that stayed behind to defend the capital. Also Russian regular army forces entered the fighting on August 8 and drove deep into Georgia proper, occasionally accompanied or followed by South Ossetian militia who allegedly committed serious human rights violations, particularly in the Georgian villages of South Ossetia.
According one estimate, the losses of the South Ossetian military forces, militia, and volunteers in the war amounted to 150 dead. According to the 2012 statement by the President of Russia Vladimir Putin, Russia had been training the South Ossetian militias as part of the Russian General Staff's 2006–2007 plan to rebuff Georgia in case of war.
Proposal to Merge with Russian Armed Forces
In March 2015, members of the Parliament of South Ossetia put forward a proposal to dissolve South Ossetia's military and fold it into the Russian Armed Forces, but the proposal was ultimately rejected by Leonid Tibilov and Defense Minister Ibragim Gassayev. The South Ossetian units are to be incorporated into the Russian military but remain separate units.
The South Ossetian military has a total of 16,000 soldiers. 2,500 soldiers are on active duty and 13,500 are reservists.
- 15 tanks: 5 T-55s and 10 T-72s
- 24 self-propelled howitzers: 12 122mm 2S1 "Gvozdikas and 12 152mm 2S3 "Akatsiya"s
- 6 122mm BM-21 "Grad" multiple rocket launchers
- 12 122mm D-30 howitzers
- 4 100mm MT-12 "Rapira" anti-tank guns
- 30 mortars
- 52 armoured combat vehicles BRDM-2, BMP-1 and BTR-70
- 6 9K31 "Strela-1" mobile, short-range, low altitude surface-to-air missile systems
- 10 ZU-23-2 short-range air defense cannons
- 4 Mi-8 helicopters
After the 2008 South Ossetia War, some of the tanks captured from Georgia's forces have been transferred to the South Ossetian military.
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- The Russian Air Force didn't perform well during the conflict in South Ossetia Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies 2008-11-15
- Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on the Conflict in Georgia(September 2009), 211 Archived February 27, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
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- Russia had plan to rebuff Georgian aggression – Putin. The Voice of Russia. August 8, 2012.
- Kucera, Joshua (January 19, 2017). "South Ossetia Keeps Its Military, For Now". EurasiaNet. Archived from the original on January 22, 2017.
South Ossetia's armed forces will become part of the Russian armed forces but will retain separate units, the self-declared republic's authorities have announced. The plan appears to be a compromise worked out between the de facto leadership in Tskhinvali and their patrons in Moscow [...] In 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his de facto South Ossetian counterpart Leonid Tibilov signed an agreement on "alliance and integration" which included a provision calling for "certain units of the armed forces of South Ossetia to enter the structure" of the Russian military.
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