Georgia foils mutiny, accuses Russia of financing it | world | Hindustan Times
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Georgia foils mutiny, accuses Russia of financing it

world Updated: May 06, 2009 00:09 IST
Georgia foils mutiny

Georgia said it put down a mutiny at a military base on Tuesday and accused Moscow of financing a coup on the eve of NATO war games in the former Soviet republic.

Russia, which fought a war with Georgia last year, denied any involvement and said President Mikheil Saakashvili was trying to shift the blame for his domestic problems.

Georgia's opposition said the incident was "a show" to deflect attention from protests against the president. Saakashvili called the rebellion at the Mukhrovani tank base a "serious threat". Police kept reporters at a distance and it was not clear how many of the 500 soldiers there were involved.

About three hours after news broke of a military uprising, around 30 tanks and armoured personnel carriers entered the base, followed later by Saakashvili and the ministers of defence and interior, a Reuters reporter said.

Officials said officers had surrendered and their commander had been arrested.

Isolated incident, says Pentagon

The Pentagon on Tuesday said a mutiny at a Georgia military base appeared to be an isolated incident but said it was continuing to monitor the situation. “It looks like a fairly isolated incident at this point," said Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman.He declined comment on Georgia claims of Russian involvement.