Abkhaz Officials Visit in Minsk

Abkhaz ‘education minister’ Inal Gablia and newly appointed deputy chief of security council, former top diplomat Daur Kove have visited Minsk, the Belarusian capital, where were received on December 1 by Alexander Shatko, Deputy Chair of The Belaya Rus Public Association.

The Belaya Rus, a large association that unites some 191 thousand members, was founded in 2007 to support President Aleksandr Lukashenko.

According to the organization’s press release, titled “Belarus – Abkhazia. There is a contact,” the parties made a preliminary agreement between the Belaya Rus and the United Abkhazia party “to implement joint projects to bring civil societies of the two countries closer together.”

After the meeting, Inal Gablia told Russian state-owned Sputnik agency that the Abkhaz delegation held further meetings at the Writers’ Union of Belarus, as well as with the rector of the Republican Institute of Professional Education, adding that they are also planning a rendezvous with the Education Minister of Belarus.

According to the same report, Gablia expressed gratitude to Lukashenko and Belarusian colleagues “who are helping to promote Abkhazia in the international arena.”

To date, Belarus does not officially recognize Abkhazia’s independence from Georgia. In 2009, Minsk was considering to recognize both Abkhazia and Tskhinvali regions, but eventually refused to follow Kremlin’s suit. Lukashenko then said he rejected the move because Moscow refused to share negative consequences, including sanctions expected for Belarus from the West in case of such decision.

Some two weeks ago, Kremlin-backed South Ossetian leader Anatoly Bibilov also expressed hopes for the recognition of the occupied region’s independence by Belarus and other states.

Moscow, that recognized the independence of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia on August 26, 2008, two weeks after the end of the Russo-Georgian war, has been pushing for the two regions’ recognition. But so far, Syria, Venezuela, Nauru, and Nicaragua are the only other nations that recognize the two regions’ independence from Georgia.

Tbilisi and most of the international community regard the two regions as part of Georgia.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)