Profile of South Ossetia

The South Ossetia map

In 1992, South Ossetia broke away from Georgia and declared itself a republic. This independence is not acknowledged by Georgia or the vast majority of UN members.

In 2008, Russia and Georgia engaged in a brief war in South Ossetia. Later, Moscow recognized South Ossetia as an independent state and started a process of closer ties, which Georgia sees as akin to annexation.

Most of the people in South Ossetia are Ossetians, who speak a language that is distantly related to Persian. The two conflicts have led to the displacement of the majority of ethnic Georgians from the area. Before the Soviet Union's collapse, they made up about a third of the population. .

  • with capital letters. Tskhinvali.
  • Area:.  3,900 sq km.
  • Population:. 56,520.
  • Languages:. Georgian, Russian, and Ossetia.
  • Typical lifespan: 73 years.

Alan Gagloev is in charge.

Alan Gagloev

Following the presidential elections in April 2022, Gagloev was elected as the new leader of South Ossetia. One of his first actions was to postpone the planned referendum on Russian unification for July 2022 until talks with Moscow were finished.

He declared that the growth of the area's economy would be his top priority during his election campaign. The main focus of our republic's foreign policy, he declared in his inauguration speech, would be allied relations and integration with Russia. ".

South Ossetian flag flies over Tskhinvali
The 2008 battles caused significant damage to Tskhinvali.

Beyond the state broadcaster and state news agency, there is not much media activity in South Ossetia.

There is a lot of relaying of radio and TV stations from Moscow. Only a few sporadic private newspapers are published.

  • The national broadcaster is Ir. runs the lone local television station, which broadcasts Russian and Ossetian news and Russian TV for the majority of the day. It runs the Osinform news agency and the website
  • Osradio is a pan-Ossetian website and radio station that broadcasts to both North and South Ossetia in Russia.
  • Ossetian and Russian versions of the Sputnik news agency, which is owned by the Russian government.
  • The South Ossetian press and information committee was renamed to Res, the state news agency.

Here are some significant dates in South Ossetia's history:

The Ossetians are thought to be descended from tribes that arrived in the region from Asia many centuries ago and made North Ossetia their home.

A border that runs high in the Caucasus mountains separates it from Russia's North Ossetia region. A large portion of the area is located more than 1,000 meters above sea level.

The Ossetians did not unite with other North Caucasian peoples in putting up ferocious resistance as the Russian empire grew in this region in the 18th and 19th centuries.

They supported the Bolshevik forces that invaded Georgia in the early 1920s, and as a result, South Ossetia Autonomous Region was established in Georgia and North Ossetia was established in Russia.

South Ossetia experienced a surge in separatist sentiment at the end of the Soviet Union, when nationalist leader Zviad Gamsakhurdia took office in Georgia.

1990-92. - The area declares its intention to secede from Georgia in 1990 and declares independence in 1992 after several violent outbursts.

Up until the summer of 1992, when agreement is reached on the deployment of Georgian, Ossetian, and Russian peacekeepers, sporadic fighting involving Georgian irregular forces and Ossetian fighters continues.

2008. - After Georgia attempted to retake South Ossetia by force following more minor clashes with Russian-backed rebels, tensions between Georgia and Russia grew into a full-fledged military conflict.

Georgian troops are driven out of South Ossetia and Abkhazia by a Russian counterattack. Following five days of fighting, the two sides sign a truce mediated by France. Russia acknowledges South Ossetia and Abkhazia as sovereign nations.

2009. - By agreeing to formally take control of its borders with Abkhazia and Georgia proper for a period of five years, Russia strengthens its position in South Ossetia.

2015. - Russia and South Ossetia agree to end border checkpoints by signing an "alliance and integration agreement.". This is seen by Georgia as a move closer to Russian annexation of the area. A short distance from Georgia's main west-east highway, Russian forces move the border fence 10.5 kilometers further into Georgia proper.

2017. - The region decides to change its name to the State of Alania. A dispute exists in the area regarding the historical heirs of Alania, a medieval kingdom that was once located in the central North Caucasus.

2022. - South Ossetia announces that for 10 days each month, checkpoints will be open with Georgia.

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