Statement of the MFA
of Abkhazia on the Reaction of Some Countries and Organizations to the
2012 Parliamentary Elections in Abkhazia
Sukhum, Upon completion of the
first round of voting in the elections to the People's Assembly –
Parliament of the Republic of Abkhazia - and the current time, some
countries and organizations have declared the 2012 Parliamentary
elections in Abkhazia "illegitimate". Such statements have been made by
NATO, the US Department of State and the US Embassy in Georgia, the
Delegation of the EU to Georgia, PACE co-reporters on Georgia and the
Foreign Ministries of Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland and
In this regard the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs of the Republic of Abkhazia emphasizes that the countries and
organizations which declared the 2012 Parliamentary Elections in
Abkhazia "illegitimate" did not see fit to support their conclusions by
any legal or factual evidence. Such conclusions could have been made
only from direct observation of preparation and conduct of voting in the
elections to the People's Assembly of the Republic of Abkhazia. However,
none of the above-mentioned countries and organizations sent their
observers here, though the Central Election Commission of Abkhazia would
have definitely provided them everything necessary for quality
monitoring of the voting process.
It should be noted, that all observers,
including the ones representing UN-member states – Russia, Venezuela,
Nicaragua and Tuvalu, as well as the European Parliament and
international non-governmental organizations confirmed that the 2012
Parliamentary elections in Abkhazia met all international democratic
standards. Abkhazia has already held several transparent Presidential
and Parliamentary elections and established a democratic system. The
people of Abkhazia recognized the legitimacy of voting procedures in
their state long ago.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the
Republic of Abkhazia considers the statements about "illegitimacy" of
the elections to the People's Assembly of the Republic of Abkhazia as
unfair, politically motivated and hostile to the free choice of the
people of Abkhazia. We denounce the recurrent attempts of some countries
and organizations to dismiss the successful development of democratic
institutions and processes in the Republic of Abkhazia.
The double standards and political bias
demonstrated by the above-mentioned countries and organizations can
neither benefit the democratic developments in the region nor increase
confidence in the participation of some of these actors in post-conflict
resolution processes in the South Caucasus.
has given an interview to the Italian magazine "Eurasia"
Ankuab has given an interview to the
editor of the Italian magazine "Eurasia", Filippo Pederzini. He is
currently in Abkhazia, along with professor of sociology Mauro Murgia.
Murgia has visited Abkhazia several times and is President of the
Association of Italo-Abkhazian friendship. In the first issue of "Eurasia"
this year appears the editor's conversation with Mauro Murgia on the
topic of Abkhazia."Recently there has developed in Italy an interest in
Abkhazia, not only among citizens but also among political circles,"
said Mauro Murgia.
"Rather than talk about Abkhazia, the
Abkhazians should be allowed to speak for themselves. That is our
opinion," said Filippo Pederzini.
Ankuab recalled that, in ancient times,
links existed between Abkhazia and Rome and noted that today, especially,
these links links should be developed.
"There are some double standards, and
these must be overcome. And one of the tools to overcome is these
standards is [dissemination of] information about Abkhazia. You are
already doing this," said the president.
The guests expressed interest in the
domestic and foreign policy of Abkhazia.
"We are faced with specific goals, and we
will attain them. Russia is the only country that is providing us with
full support. All others, especially the EU countries, are interested in
the question of whether or not we are going to survive," said Alexandr
The President reiterated that recognition
by Russia was a huge breakthrough in our recent history.
"Something that has been sought by more
than one generation of our people has been achieved," said Alexandr
The guests were also interested in other
issues. They noted that it would be beneficial to develop relations
between our countries in the spheres of education and sport.
"We are interested in this," said Alexandr
He noted that in Abkhazia there are a lot
of fans of Italian football.
"We have nothing against flying to Italy
to watch matches," the president added.
Filippo Pederzini and Mauro Murgia noted
that the citizens of Abkhazia can easily obtain visas at the Italian
Embassy in Moscow.
"We are proud of this," they said.
Secretary Welcomes Completion of the First Round of Voting in Abkhazia’s
Abkhazia Demonstrates its
Hague, As a turnout of
44.5% is recorded in the most recent elections to be conducted in
Abkhazia, attentions now focus on run-off polling scheduled for 24 March
2012 that will decide the composition of the country’s People’s Assembly.
Without substantive international support
or advice Abkhazia has evaluated, trialed, and implemented voting
systems and procedures that not only meet the standards of international
election observers but have built a political system that is resilient
and reflective of the needs and priorities of its people.
Organisations such as the US-based Freedom
House rank Abkhazia favourably compared to its much larger and
better-resourced regional neighbours. From UNPO’s missions to Abkhazia
it is clear that a vibrant civil society and non-governmental sector
wants to make the next step in capacity-building and good governance.
Therefore, the international community
must use these polls, not as an opportunity to sanction the free
expression of all the people of Abkhazia, but to identify what can be
done to support responsible journalism, voter education, and youth
participation in democratic processes that are universal.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Abkhazia comments on the
conclusions of the EU Foreign Affairs Council on the South Caucasus
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the
Republic of Abkhazia has thoroughly familiarized itself with the
conclusions of the EU Foreign Affairs Council on the South Caucasus
which confirms the commitment of the EU to remain involved in conflict
resolution and stabilization of the situation in the region as well as
to strengthening its cooperation with the Abkhaz and South Ossetian
First of all, it should be noted that it
is not possible to pursue "greater EU visibility" in Abkhazia and South
Ossetia, or "to start transformative work," without respecting the
political choice made by the peoples of these independent states.
Contrary to the proclaimed purpose to "engage" the citizens of Abkhazia
and South Ossetia, the EU is alienating them by its discriminatory visa
policy. It is evident that in recent years, Europe, as never before, has
become closed to these citizens.
It is frustrating that the EU Foreign
Ministers welcome the inefficient and politicized Georgian strategy for
so called "engagement" with Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Such statements
can only discredit the European plans for cooperation with Abkhazia. It
is becoming more and more difficult to distinguish the European
interests towards Abkhazia from the interests of Tbilisi authorities.
The Absence of substantial differences between the European and Georgian
approaches impedes the improvement of relations between the EU and
As long as the European strategy
"Engagement without Recognition" means in reality "maximum
non-recognition and minimum engagement", any European initiatives
towards Abkhazia will hardly be supported by the Abkhaz community. It is
becoming more and more difficult to build confidence between Abkhazia
and the European Union, which unambiguously has a pro-Georgian position.
The Russian military presence, about which
the EU Ministers expressed their concern, is seen by the citizens of
Abkhazia as the only real guarantee of security. Continuing reluctance
of Georgia to sign a legal non-use of force document with Abkhazia and
South Ossetia once again convinces the Abkhaz and South Ossetian people
of the revanchist plans of Tbilisi authorities. All "sustainable
security arrangements" proposed for the Geneva Discussions should take
into account the positions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as parties to
the conflict and legitimate subjects of the negotiation process.
We appreciate the role of the Geneva
Discussions on Security and Stability. We do not doubt the positive
effect of a regional European presence, realised by the mandate of the
EU's Special Representative for the South Caucasus. At the same time it
is evident, that there will be no actual progress as long as the primary
importance in negotiations, or any other political interaction, is
assigned to the restoration of Georgia's "territorial integrity". Such
political and legal programming of negotiation strategy by our Western
colleagues is the main obstacle for resolution of the conflicts.
Nonetheless, despite the different
positions, there is still an opportunity for making relations between
Abkhazia and the EU more constructive. It is to our satisfaction to note
that the executive authorities of the European Union do not use the term
"occupied territory" imposed by Georgia when they refer to Abkhazia and
South Ossetia. We also welcome the fact that the conclusions appeal to
the Georgian authorities to enhance integration of refugees into the
communities of their current residence in this country.
Abkhazia is a part of Europe. We are ready
to cooperate with those European and international political bodies
which have at least a neutral position on the political and legal status
of Abkhazia. Unfortunately, judging by the whole histrionic spirit of
the conclusions, the European politicians are still preoccupied by
obstinate commitment to the non-existing mythical "territorial integrity
of Georgia". Only deliverance from such useless and outdated complexes
can contribute to a more positive EU presence in Abkhazia and South
Ossetia as well as in the whole region. Source: MFA Abkhazia
A delegation from
Tuvalu Arrives in Abkhazia
Sukhum, On 7 March, a delegation
from Tuvalu, headed by Prime Minister Willy Telavi, arrived in Abkhazia.
The same day, the President of Abkhazia received th high-ranking guests.
Aleksandr Ankuab, on behalf of the people
and the leadership of the country, welcomed to soil of Abkhazia the
delegation of Tuvalu, headed by the Prime Minister.
"Welcome to the country you have
recognised!" said Aleksandr Ankuab. Willy Telavi thanked the leadership
for the warm welcome. He greeted the President on behalf of the people
of Tuvalu.This is the second visit to Abkhazia by the Prime Minister of
this Pacific Ocean state. The first time he visited our country was
September last year.
"I have come to renew our friendly
relations," said the Prime Minister. He spoke briefly about the history
of Tuvalu and about the current state of affairs. He stressed that
Tuvalu, as a state, is a member of the UN, and that in the near future
it will be providing Abkhazia with the highest support for its
recognition by the international community.
The President of Abkhazia expressed his
gratitude for the support. He noted that, despite the distance between
our two countries, cooperation is already underway.
The Prime Minister said that goodwill
would overcome all distances. "You are fighting for the truth, and we
support your efforts," said the Prime Minister of Tuvalu.
Aleksandr Ankuab said that there are many
unjust standards in the world of which many countries take advantage.
"We value our independence, which was
attained at the cost of immense losses. We will not retreat from this
decision. As a people we share your tenacity, and we shall go forward,"
said Aleksandr Ankuab.
Chirikba: "We simply will not read these letters"
Sukhum, Political advisor to the
Council of Europe Rozaria Pulisi has arrived in Abkhazia. The European
diplomat met with the republic’s Foreign Minister, Vyacheslav Chirikba.
In the course of their talks they discussed the situation in the Gal
district, the possibility of a UNESCO mission visiting Abkhazia, and
other sensitive issues.
Visits to Abkhazia by European officials
are becoming more frequent. Almost every week, representatives of
varying levels of seniority of different EU agencies visit Sukhum and
meet with the president and government representatives. As Abkhaz
Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Chirikba noted, the intensification of
dialogue with Europe is already bearing fruit - it gives grounds for
optimism regarding the prospects for developing relations between the
European Union and Abkhazia.
"There is now undoubtedly a greater
understanding, a better knowledge of the situation, but whether the
relationship has changed is of course a different question," Vyacheslav
The head of the Abkhaz Foreign Ministry
said the primary objective of the talks with European official Rozaria
Pulisi was to ensure that the views of the Abkhaz side are reflected in
the Secretary General of the Council of Europe’s report, which is
currently being drafted, on the situation in the region. In addition,
the diplomats discussed current problems, in particular the situation in
the border district of Gal.
"During the dialogue, which was quite a
long one, we touched on the situation in the Gal district, which is
deteriorating: as you know, there have been several murders there. The
activities of Georgia’s secret services are generally of great concern
to us, and we have to make this clear," Vyacheslav Chirikba said.
The Abkhaz side formally protested yet
again against the EU’s visa policy. Vyacheslav Chirikba said that Sukhum
will continue to raise the possibility of issuing European visas to
holders of Abkhazian passports. He recalled that even Georgia issues
visas to holders of Kosovo passports although it has not recognized
Kosovo as an independent state. The issue of Abkhaz historic monuments
was also raised.
"We explained that this is our past, that
these are our monuments. We very much want to obtain help in restoring
and preserving them. We would welcome the sending of a UNESCO mission
that would assess the state of our monuments and perhaps help to finance
their reconstruction," Vyacheslav Chirikba said.
After the talks with Mrs. Pulisi, the
Abkhaz Foreign Minister made a landmark political statement.
"We shall not in future consider any
official letters addressed to us if they use the incorrect names of
Abkhazian towns - "Gali", "Sukhumi". We simply will not read these
letters," said Vyacheslav Chirikba.
The negotiations with the European
diplomat took place behind closed doors. After the meeting with the
Minister, Mrs. Pulisi chose not to talk to the press, so until the
statement of the Council of Europe Secretary General is made public one
can only guess at the European reaction to the Abkhaz Foreign Minister’s
statement and not draw any conclusions.