Saturday, 12 September 2009

Abkhazia hopes for Latin America, Mideast recognition

MOSCOW, September 11 (RIA Novosti) - Abkhazia hopes both the entire Latin American continent and the Middle East will recognize its independence, the president of the former Georgian republic said on Friday.

On Thursday, Venezuela joined Russia and Nicaragua in recognizing Abkhazia and South Ossetia as sovereign states, a move condemned by Georgia, which considers the republics part of its territory.

"There is such an opportunity, but we are not propelling the process. We are working not only on the Caribbean countries, we are also working on the Middle East and European nations and organizations," Sergei Bagapsh told the Russia Today news channel.

Nicaragua and Abkhazia signed on Thursday an agreement on establishing diplomatic relations.
Abkhazian Foreign Minister Sergei Shamba earlier told RIA Novosti that Venezuela's recognition "could spark a cascade" of similar acts on the part of other Latin American countries.

Russia recognized the two republics shortly after the end of last August's war with Georgia over South Ossetia, which began when Georgian forces attacked the republic in an attempt to bring it back under central control.

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