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Russia and Abkhazia to coordinate their foreign policies

Foreign ministers of Russia and Abkhazia Sergey Lavrov and Vyacheslav Chirikba signed a memorandum on the foreign policy coordination mechanisms after negotiations on March 11.

Lavrov told reporters they discussed “coordination of the two countries’ actions on the international arena in the light of the uneasy situation in the world.” Moscow will help Abkhazia strengthen its positions in the world and expand the list of the countries recognizing Abkhazia, Sergey Lavrov said.

“We have agreed to enhance the contractual basis in such fields as defense, security, social and humanitarian issues. We are working to boost economic cooperation and contribute to development of Abkhazia. To that end, we are successfully developing the investment program for 2015-2017,” the Russian minister said.

Lavrov called the Geneva discussions on the South Caucasus security as “very, very useful.” “In Geneva, we discussed the participation of our delegations in the upcoming round of talks. We will do our best to achieve legally binding agreements on non-use of force,” the minister said.

He reaffirmed Moscow’s commitment to reactivation of the Sukhumi-Tbilisi railway section, saying the decision rests with Georgia and Abkhazia.

Abkhazia informed Russia on the steps to render humanitarian support to southeastern Ukraine and “those steps deserve appreciation,” the minister said.

Vycheslav Chirikba, in turn, said the memorandum suggests “measures to increase the number of countries recognizing Abkhazia and to create conditions for Abkhazia to join international organizations.”

The Abkhazian minister said they discussed the issues of border crossing. “We enjoy a high level of understanding, like colleagues, friends and partners, which reflects the nature of our countries’ relations,” he said.

As EAD reported earlier, Russia and Abkhazia signed a new Big Treaty that came into effect on March 5. Under the Treaty on Alliance and Strategic Partnership, Russia and Abkhazia are to coordinate the foreign policy, create a common area of defense, and facilitate the Russian-Abkhazian border crossing.

About 30 agreements are to be signed as part of the alliance treaty.

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