Rob Farley points to a Times article reporting that Russia will soon annex South Ossetia. The source for the report? The South Ossetian president. So, as Rob notes, caveat emptor.
Indeed, I can’t find anything about this on an (admittedly quick) look through the English-language Russian press. I do see a word of a military cooperation agreement and mutual recognition between South Ossetia and Abkhazia. More griping about lack of adequate support (background) from Russia from the SCO. A report on South Ossetia’s decision to form a new government….
So, yeah, I tend to agree. Given the paucity of other states recognizing the two enclaves so far, and the lack of any clear gains for Moscow from annexing either of them–they can just continue to do it de facto–I wouldn’t hold my breath. But I also wouldn’t bet against it happening at some point.