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Baltics call presidential elections in Abkhazia ’unlawful’

Aug 25, 2014
From wire reports, VILNIUS

Baltics call presidential elections in Abkhazia ’unlawful’
Raul Khajimba is reported to have won the controversial election in Abkhazia (photo: twitter)

Baltic officials have criticized elections in the break away region of Abkhazia in Georgia held on August 24.

Estonia's Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Paet said that the Presidential elections were illegitimate as they violate Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

“Recognizing these elections would mean legitimizing military occupation in the area, and that would not be acceptable,” said the Minister.

“We call upon Russia to fulfill all of its obligations assumed in the 2008 cease-fire agreement, including returning its troops to pre-conflict positions,”

Paet estimated that in order to guarantee security and stability in the region, it is important to continue international negotiations in Geneva and to guarantee access of the European Union monitoring mission on the entire territory of Georgia, including in Abkhazia. 

Paet estimated that in order to guarantee security and stability in the region, it is important to continue international negotiations in Geneva and to guarantee access of the European Union monitoring mission on the entire territory of Georgia, including in Abkhazia. 

He said that the separatist regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia unilaterally announcing their independence violate international law. “Hence any so-called elections there have no legal and constitutional basis,” added Paet.

High Representative of the European Union for foreign affairs and security policy Catherine Ashton stated that "The European Union supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia, as recognized by international law" and reiterated that "the European Union does not recognize the constitutional and legal framework within which these elections have taken place."

"Lithuania in this context emphasizes the importance of the Geneva International Discussions in ensuring the security and stability in the region. Any kind of elections in the region of Abkhazia might be legitimate only after peaceful solution to the conflict is reached via negotiations and with agreement of all parties involved," a statement from Lithuania's ministry of foreign affairs state.

The ITAR TASS news agency reports there were long queues for elections on August 24. Raul Khajimba has won Abkhazia's presidential election in the first round, Radio Free Europe reports. 

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