"NATO does not recognise the election held on 12 March in the Georgian region of Abkhazia. This election does not contribute to a lasting settlement of the situation in Georgia," the statement said.
On Sunday, the first round of parliamentary elections was held in Abkhazia with 137 candidates competing in 35 single-mandate constituencies. The elections were found valid all over the republic.
Abkhazia and South Ossetia declared independence from Georgia in the early 1990s. In August 2008, Georgia launched a military offensive against South Ossetia. Trying to protect local residents, many of whom had Russian citizenship, Russia sent troops to South Ossetia and engaged in a five-day war with Georgia. As a result, Russia managed to expel Georgian troops from the breakaway region and recognized independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Tbilisi does not recognize the republics' independence and considers them part of Georgia.