Summary: 14 August 2008 - The European Commission fully supports the EU French Presidency in its energetic efforts to ensure a real and lasting ceasefire and end all hostilities, so as to resolve the present conflict.
The first and foremost goal now must be indeed to secure an effective ceasefire, put an end to the bloodshed and human suffering and ensure that humanitarian aid reaches the victims of the conflict wherever they may be.
In that context we welcome the commitment to a ceasefire made by Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili and the announcement to end military operations made by Russian President Dimitri Medvedev on August 12.
We trust that these commitments will be translated into concrete reality on the ground immediately. In particular, we call on Russia to halt all military activity on Georgian territory and respect Georgia's territorial integrity.
We remain very concerned about the victims and the suffering of the civilian population. The Commission has released €1 million in fast-track aid to cover urgent humanitarian needs of thousands of civilians. Further funds could be released as soon as we know more about the specific needs on the ground.
In that context we'd like to remind all parties of the need to respect international humanitarian law - and to ensure humanitarian access and safe passage.