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Russian, Abkhazian foreign ministers to discuss bilateral ties, security in South Caucasus

March 11, 2015, 9:49 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The legal framework of bilateral cooperation between Russia and Abkhazia consists of around 90 documents
1 pages in this article
© ITAR-TASS/ Anton Novoderezhkin

MOSCOW, March 11. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Abkhazian counterpart Vyacheslav Chirikba are due to hold talks in Moscow on Wednesday to discuss the development of full-fledged interstate cooperation and also the strengthening of foreign policy coordination.

"Today a profound exchange of views on the topical international issues will take place, including on coordination as part of the Geneva discussions on the issues of stability and security in the South Caucasus in which Abkhazia participates on an equal basis," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

The legal framework of bilateral cooperation between Russia and Abkhazia consists of around 90 documents. The key of them are the treaty on friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance of September 17, 2008 and the treaty on allied relations and strategic partnership that entered into force on March 5, 2015.

According to Lavrov, the treaty on allied relations and strategic partnership sets the task of ensuring the most convenient border crossing regime for the citizens. The minister said Russia and Abkhazia are currently working on the border demarcation in an effort to sign a respective treaty.

"Amid Tbilisi’s persistent refusal to sign the binding agreements on the non-use of force, the Russian-Abkhazian cooperation in the security sphere is of special importance," the Russian Foreign Ministry said. "Based on the existing bilateral agreements, a Russian military base is established on Abkhazia’s territory and our border guards protect the republic’s borders with Georgia," the ministry said.

Moscow will continue developing the legal framework of the Russian-Abkhazian relations, the ministry said.

"Now some 30 documents and agreements as well as sectoral documents are being prepared to be signed further to the treaty on allied relations and strategic partnership where new areas of cooperation related to defence and security, social, humanitarian and other spheres of cooperation will be included," the statement says.

By recognizing the independence of Abkhazia, a Georgian breakaway region, in 2008, Russia acted as a guarantor of its existence as an independent state.

"Our interstate relations, which are based on allied relations and strategic partnership, are developing dynamically. Russia is providing Abkhazia with large-scale aid by implementing an investment program of assisting the social and economy development of the republic in 2015-2017," the ministry says.

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