Russia’s Duma wants Georgia’s breakaway regions recognised

March 22nd, 2008 - 12:44 am ICT by admin  

Moscow, March 21 (DPA) Russia’s parliament Friday voted unanimously in favour of a resolution to recognise Georgia’s two breakaway regions in a move that seems calculated to respond to the West’s ratification of Kosovo’s independence. “The state Duma deputies appeal to the Russian president and government… to recognise sovereignty for the Abkhazia and South Ossetian regions,” news agency Interfax quoted the statement as saying.

Friday’s draft resolution declares that Moscow should expedite recognition of the two de-facto self-governing provinces if Georgia were to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).

The resolution pointed to Kosovo’s independence as a legal precedent, saying that Abkhazia and South Ossetia have “built democratic states with more grounds to claim international recognition than Kosovo.”

Russia maintains that recognition of Kosovo’s split from Serbia sunders international law, warning that it will lead to a “parade of sovereignty” in the Caucasus.

Russia has long provided financial aid to the separatist regions and offered citizenship to many of the residents, but Georgia has long enjoyed Western support for its territorial integrity.

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