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    Russia says UN Abkhazian refugee resolution counterproductive

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    Russia's Foreign Ministry criticized as counterproductive on Friday a move by the UN General Assembly to adopt a Tbilisi-sponsored resolution on the return of refugees to Georgia's breakaway republic of Abkhazia.

    MOSCOW, May 16 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Foreign Ministry criticized as counterproductive on Friday a move by the UN General Assembly to adopt a Tbilisi-sponsored resolution on the return of refugees to Georgia's breakaway republic of Abkhazia.

    The resolution recognizing the right of refugees and internally displaced persons to return to Abkhazia and "underlines the urgent need for a timetable to ensure" their prompt return was adopted 14-11, with 105 abstentions, on Thursday.

    "The vote results clearly demonstrate that the international community has actually failed to support Georgia's maneuvers on the problem. Russia voted against the project and gave a statement explaining its position," the ministry said, describing the resolution as a counterproductive move that could complicate further the conflict between Georgia and Abkhazia.

    Tbilisi hailed the resolution as a victory on the international arena, said Giorgi Baramidze, Georgian minister for Euro-Atlantic integration.

    "This is a significant victory on the international arena regarding the protection of our interests," Baramidze said.

    Tensions between Russia and Georgia plummeted to a new low following Moscow's decision to step up ties with Abkhazia and Georgia's other Georgian breakaway region, South Ossetia. The two republics broke away from Georgia in the early 1990s following the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    Russia, which has administered a peacekeeping contingent in Georgia's breakaway regions since bloody conflicts in the 1990s, dispatched additional troops to Abkhazia recently to deter what it called a planned Georgian military offensive.

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