From theAP: President Dmitry Medvedev says Russia is to station a permanent military base in Georgia’s breakaway republic of Abkhazia.
Abkhazia and South Ossetia, another separatist-held part of Georgia, declared independence after the 2008 Russia-Georgia war. Thousands of Russian troops are thought to have remained in the Moscow-sponsored republics, which Georgia and the West consider sovereign Georgian land.
Medvedev said at a news conference with Abkhazia’s de facto leader on Wednesday that an agreement was signed to allow a Russian military base to operate there.
From the Sofia News Agency: The agreement between Russia and Abkhazia stipulates that the Russian military base will be leased for 49 years, and will allow the Russian forces “to protect the sovereignty and security of the Republic together with the armed forces of Abkhazia…”
Russian representatives have announced that there were 1 700 Russian military officers stationed off the Black Sea coast in Abkhazia at present. (photo: EPA/BGNES)