UN chief: Ongoing war prevents access to South Ossetia and Gori

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that humanitarian aid groups and UN monitors could not relieve suffering in large parts of Georgia due to the ongoing war and lawlessness. A statement issued by his office Thursday said Ban welcomed Wednesday's cease-fire agreement between Russia and Georgia "but notes that notwithstanding this agreement, violence continues, with civilians bearing the brunt." The deal worked out by France permits Russian forces to "implement additional security measures." Ban urged all combatants "to respect and protect civilians in accordance with international humanitarian law and human rights law."