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Georgian breakaway region says it sent troops to Ukraine to ‘help protect Russia’

Anatoly Bibilov, the leader of Georgia's breakaway region of South Ossetia arrives for his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, on August 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool)
Anatoly Bibilov, the leader of Georgia's breakaway region of South Ossetia arrives for his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, on August 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool)

MOSCOW — Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia has sent troops to Ukraine to “help protect Russia,” its leader says today, as Moscow’s military campaign in the neighboring country entered its 31st day.

“Our guys are going to fulfill their military duty with a proudly raised banner,” the leader of South Ossetia, Anatoly Bibilov, says on Telegram.

He says the troops are “on fire.”

“They understand perfectly that they are going to defend Russia, they are going to defend Ossetia too,” Bibilov says.

“Because if fascism is not crushed at the distant frontiers, tomorrow it will again manifest itself here.”

He doesn’t say how many troops have been deployed, but posts a video showing several buses and trucks on the move.

The announcement comes on the 31st day of the Kremlin’s military campaign in pro-Western Ukraine, with thousands of people killed and more than 10 million displaced.

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