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Abkhazia, S.Ossetia reject Georgia's draft refugee resolution

RIA Novosti

16:16 08/06/2011 SUKHUMI, June 8 (RIA Novosti) - Abkhazia and South Ossetia reject the Georgia-sponsored draft UN resolution recognizing the rights of refugees from Georgia's breakaway regions to return to their homes, an Abkhazian presidential envoy said on Wednesday.

Vyacheslav Chirikba said Georgia was trying to reassert its claim on South Ossetian and Abkhazian territory.

"The draft resolution ignores the current political realities, in particular the fact that South Ossetia and Abkhazia are independent states," delegations from the two republics said in a statement.

The proposed draft resolution does not essentially differ from previous ones, they said.

In September, the UN General Assembly approved the resolution "Status of the Internally Displaced Persons and Refugees from Abkhazia, Georgia and the Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia, Georgia."

About 6% of Georgia's population (about 246,000 people) were displaced, according to Amnesty International. About 220,000 left their homes during conflicts in the early 1990s.

Some 128,000 people fled South Ossetia and Abkhazia during and after the August 2008 war between Russia and Georgia. The majority of them has since returned to their homes, but close to 26,000 people are still unable to return.

Russia recognized Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states two weeks after a five-day war with Georgia in August 2008, which began when Georgian forces attacked South Ossetia in an attempt to bring it back under central control.

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