Russia, breakaway Georgia region sign pact
Iran Press TV
Mon Nov 24, 2014 4:23PM GMT
Russia and Abkhazia have signed a partnership pact, which extends Moscow's clout in the breakaway Georgia region.
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the treaty with Abkhaz President Raul Khajimba in resort city of Sochi on Monday, DPA reported.
The pact creates joint government and defense structures between the two sides, bringing Russian and Abkhazian forces under the same command.
A similar treaty is planned between Russia and the other breakaway Georgian region of South Ossetia.
Russia has recognized the regions as independent entities. Georgia, however, considers them to be its sovereign territories.
Russian troops have been deployed to Abkhazia since it broke away from Georgia in a separatist war in the early 1990s.
A war broke out between Georgia and Russia in August 2008 when former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili attempted to restore control over South Ossetia.
Georgia has condemned the Monday treaty as a step towards annexation.
The developments come amid the worst post-Cold War friction between Moscow and the West, which accuses Russia of being involved in the conflict that has been going on in Ukraine since November 2013. Russia has repeatedly denied the accusation.
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