The International Red Cross said on Monday it was seeking urgent clarification from Russia after its president was unable to enter the breakaway province of South Ossetia on a humanitarian mission.

The Red Cross "has not been able to get access to South Ossetia," Dominik Stillhart, the International Committee of the Red Cross's (ICRC) deputy director of operations, told Reuters in a telephone interview from the Russian city of Vladikavkaz.

"Access to South Ossetia is a priority. We have lined up teams, logistics and assistance ... We need to have discussions in Moscow to find out exactly what is the problem."

"We have calls from people in South Ossetia who can't contact their family members ... it's really important that we get access to assess the situation."



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