Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a presidential ordinance on May 23, appointing Marat Kulakhmetov “the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to the Republic of South Ossetia.”
Maj. Gen. Kulakhmetov is the former Russian commander of the Joint Peacekeeping Forces (JPKF) in Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia in 2004-2008. South Ossetia`s newly elected leader Anatoly Bibilov formally was then under Maj.Gen. Kulakhmetov`s command, as the deputy commander of the North Ossetian (Russia) batallion.
Before taking up the commander’s position in 2004, Marat Kulakhmetov led the 19th Division of the Russian armed forces deployed in Russia’s North Ossetian Republic.
From 2011, Kulakhmetov served as an advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.
Kulakhmetov will replace Elbrus Kargiev who served on the post since 2008, when Russia recognized the region’s independence.