Some Russian troops have started leaving a Georgian village near the breakaway region of Abkhazia, a day after Moscow said it would pull out within a month.
Under the deal brokered by EU President France on Monday, Moscow has vowed to withdraw from so-called “undisputed Georgian territory”. However, it remains unclear to what extent Russia is preparing its departure.
A month after the short-lived conflict betwen Russia and Georgia over the separatist regions, Russian troops remain stationed deep within the Georgian territories.
Moscow said on Monday morning that they could stay there “for a long time”, adding that it plans to maintain more than 7,000 men in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
On the streets of Tbilisi, the mood was sceptical.
“I don’t think they are going to leave,” said one woman.
“They have brought in so much military equipment. I don’t have any hope.”
A meeting of world leaders is planned in Geneva next month to discuss the situation in the volatile region.