** UPDATE **
URGENT: Russian Ground Forces Invade Georgia, Georgian Army Retreats to Defend Capital; Government Appeals for Urgent International Intervention
At this hour, the invading army of the Russian Federation has entered Georgian territory outside the conflict zones of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The Georgian army is retreating to defend the capital. The Government is urgently seeking international intervention to prevent the fall of Georgia and the further loss of life.
"We no longer know the limits of the invading Russian army—Russia seems intent on overthrowing the democratically elected government of Georgia and occupying the country," said Alexander Lomaia, the Secretary of the National Security Council. "As a consequence, the National Security Council has just decided to bring the Georgian army to Tbilisi in order to defend the capital and prevent the fall of Georgia."
European political leaders, including Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, are in Tbilisi meeting now with the President of Georgia to seek a way to stop the Russian onslaught.
The Government of Georgia announced a unilateral cease fire on Sunday morning, withdrew its forces from South Ossetia, and sued for peace. Despite the ceasefire and withdrawal—and in defiance of outraged international criticism of its invasion of Georgia—Russia is continuing its fierce offensive that has left hundreds of civilians dead and thousands injured.