About Civil.ge
Eng | Geo | Rus
Last updated: 14:39 - 22 Jan.'17
RSS
Mobile
Twitter
Facebook
Russia's Defense Minister Visits Russian Military Base in Abkhazia
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 15 May.'13 / 20:55

Russian Defense Minister, Sergei Shoigu, was in breakaway Abkhazia on May 14, where he visited the Russian military base located in Gudauta.

He toured military infrastructure facilities there and “paid special attention to the living conditions of the servicemen at the military base”, the Russian Ministry of Defense said.

It said that Shoigu also toured “a parking lot, which is now under construction, designed for deployment of existing and coming into service new military hardware.”

Shoigu also visited Russian military sanatorium in Gudauta.

Brussels-based think tank International Crisis Group said in its April report on Abkhazia, that 2008 war with Georgia allowed Russia "to greatly enhance its already considerable military presence" in the region and investments in development of its military infrastructure, also including residential compounds for Russian military personnel in the breakaway region, “are clear signs Moscow plans to stay in Abkhazia indefinitely.”

Citing Russian officials, the report says that there are about 5,000 Russian personnel in Abkhazia of which 3,500 are military and 1,500 Federal Security Service (FSB) officers and border guards.

“Moscow allocated $465 million over four years to the rehabilitation and construction of military infrastructure. This included work on Bombora, the largest military airfield in the South Caucasus, in Gudauta. Though Russian media sources describe significant weapons at the base, Western military officials in late 2012 said intelligence indicated only four fighter craft there on a regular basis – two Sukhoi 27s and two MiG-29s,” the report reads.

According to the report foreign military experts estimate that the Russian military infrastructure in Abkhazia could support up to 10,000 troops.

“The Russians also refurbished a smaller, though strategically and symbolically important naval port in Ochamchire, just 30km from Georgian-controlled territory,” according to the International Crisis Group report. “Eight Russian ‘border patrol’ boats are reportedly there – including two new craft that arrived in 2012. According to FSB officials, they likewise set up several radar stations along the coast to cover Abkhazia’s ‘territorial waters’ and monitor areas under Georgian naval control.”

The report says that Russia has “clearly solidified its security presence in Abkhazia over the past five years”, but Moscow is apparently “not utilising its renovated infrastructure to full capacity.” According to the report this may be due to a desire to not be seen as an occupying force, but may also be linked to Russian armed forces’ heavy commitment to combating a insurgency in the North Caucasus that limits resources available for use in Abkhazia.

“It is less likely that Russia is doing this to keep the door open to a compromise with Georgia,” the report says.

Latest News
22 Jan.'17 14:39
Parliamentary Working Group on Broadcasting Law Begins Work
Parliamentary working group on amending the broadcasting law held its first session on January 21.
21 Jan.'17 23:13
PM Kvirikashvili Concludes Visit to Switzerland
Giorgi Kvirikashvili attended the World Economic Forum in Davos.
21 Jan.'17 22:58
Georgian President, PM Send Congratulatory Messages to President Trump
President Giorgi Margvelashvili invited the new U.S. President to Georgia.
21 Jan.'17 21:29
United States Condemns Russia’s Destruction of Cultural Heritage in Abkhazia
U.S. Mission to the OSCE condemned the destruction of a historical site in Abkhazia, Georgia.
20 Jan.'17 20:24
UNM Elects New Leaders at Party Congress
The party chairman’s post remains vacant; Nika Melia was elected the head of the political council.
20 Jan.'17 19:57
Kvirikashvili: ‘Nothing To Celebrate in Transit Agreement with Gazprom’
PM Kvirikashvili said that Georgia defended its interests and “achieved the best result possible.”
20 Jan.'17 17:12
Georgian Ambassador to U.S. to Attend Trump’s Inauguration
Ambassador Davit Bakradze will attend all official inauguration events.
20 Jan.'17 16:33
Venice Commission President Visits Georgia
Buquicchio held meetings on the ongoing constitutional reform process.
20 Jan.'17 15:24
Energy Minister Responds to Gazprom Outcry
Kakha Kaladze stressed that the government took “rational and correct steps” in Gazprom negotiations.
20 Jan.'17 14:46
Georgian PM Meets Ukrainian President in Davos
Giorgi Kvirikashvili also held talks with his Croatian and Serbian counterparts.

About Civil Georgia
Civil.Ge © 2001-2017, Daily News Online
Registered office: 2 Dolidze Str, 4-th Floor.
60