TBILISI, August 26 (RIA Novosti) – Georgia has sent a note of protest to Moscow over the Russian president’s visit to a resort town in the Georgian breakaway republic of Abkhazia, the country’s foreign minister has said.
Vladimir Putin traveled to Pitsunda, a popular resort town on the Black Sea, on Sunday as Abkhazia marked the fifth anniversary since Russia recognized its independence following a brief war with Georgia. The Kremlin said Putin met with his Abkhaz counterpart, Alexander Ankvab, to discuss bilateral collaboration.
“We condemn this [visit], as this is another infringement on Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” the Novosti-Georgia news agency quoted Georgian Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze as saying.
Russia and Georgia severed diplomatic ties in 2008 after Moscow recognized the de-facto independent Georgian republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states following a five-day military conflict over South Ossetia in August that year.
Only Venezuela, Nicaragua, Vanuatu, Nauru and Tuvalu followed suit by recognizing the provinces’ independence.