(Tbilisi, January 18, Civil Georgia) – “Russian peacekeeping troops’ withdrawal from the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict zone will cause termination of UN observers’ activity in Abkhazia. This will lead to renewal of armed clashes in Abkhazia,” Georgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesmen Kakha Sikharulidze stated on January 18.
Georgia demands to change Russian peacekeepers mandate deployed in the conflict zone under the auspices of Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
“In particular, the security zone should be expanded so that people could return without obstacles at least to Gail district [border area, an administrative district between Abkhazia and Georgia],” Zurab Abashidze, Georgia’s extraordinary and plenipotentiary ambassador to Russia stated in the interview to the Russian radio station Echo Moskvy on January 17.
CIS peacekeepers mandate expired on December 31, 2001.
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