Abkhazia’s new ‘president’ voices opinion of Georgia

Khajimba won Sunday’s so-called presidential elections in Abkhazia. The West did not recognise the elections.
Agenda.ge, 28 Aug 2014 - 16:39, Tbilisi,Georgia

The newly-elected president of Georgia’s breakaway region Abkhazia wants Georgia to "finally realise Abkhazia’s existence as an independent state is a reality”.

Raul Khajimba, so-called President-elect of Abkhazia, believed Georgia should "reconcile” with Abkhazia and sign an agreement on non-use of force, "which would put bilateral relations on a positive track”.

Khajimba, who won Sunday’s so-called presidential elections in the non-recognised region, talked about Georgia-Abkhazia relations in an interview with Itar-Tass yesterday.

He said Abkhazia had not received any specified proposals on setting up direct dialogue from Georgia.

"Only the so-called Geneva floor exists today and it’s there where the two sides discuss all crucial problems,” he said.

"We need security guarantees but unfortunately we don’t have any, except empty statements on [Georgia’s] preparedness to talk to us,” Khajimba said.

The Geneva Talks are consultations among Georgia, Abkhazia, Tskhinvali region (another Georgian breakaway region) and Russia under the auspices of the European security organization OSCE. The talks were held regularly in Geneva since 2008.

"We’d like Georgia to finally realise that the independent Abkhazia’s existence is a fact of reality,” Kajimba said. He added Georgia should reconcile with Abkhazia and sign an agreement on the non-use of force, "which would put bilateral relations on a positive track”.
"We understand we won’t get away from Georgia as a neighbour. We’re destined to live side by side and [we want] to build up a relationship that will make it possible for us to minimize external risks and threats,” he said.

Khajimba believed Russia played the main role in that sense, as Russia had assured Abkhazia of peace and security and had deployed its peacekeepers in the region for years.

Earlier yesterday Khajimba met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin. They agreed the Abkhazian ‘puppet regime’ and Russia would sign a mutual assistance agreement by the end of the year.

After the meeting the Russian President’s press speaker Dmitry Peskov said the new agreement would determine the conduct of the joint measures for providing security in Abkhazia.

The previous agreement, which will stay in force until the Kremlin signs the new one with its satellite regime, was signed after the Russia-Georgia August War in 2008.

Two of Georgian lands, Abkhazia and Tskhinvali regions (otherwise called South Ossetia) are currently occupied by Russia. Despite the fact Russia recognised them in 2008, the international society including the European Union and the United States do not recognise the regions and consider them part of Georgia.

On Sunday Abkhazia held the so called presidential elections, which the West assessed as "illegal” and "”non-constitutional”.