Anatoly Bibilov and Raul Khajimba, Moscow-backed leaders of Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia and Abkhazia, respectively, met today with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, and discussed the deepening of ties.
The Russian President told Bibilov that Moscow is “sparing no efforts to ensure security of the Republic of South Ossetia, [and] support [it] economically.”
“It was after coercing (Georgia) to peace and after recognition of the republic of South Ossetia, that the South Ossetian people started to live in an absolutely different format – the format of stability, peace and prosperity,” Bibilov stated.
The Tskhinvali leader awarded Putin with a “state decoration” for his “outstanding personal role in repelling Georgia’s armed aggression against the republic of South Ossetia” and for strengthening its sovereignty.
At the meeting with Abkhaz leader, Vladimir Putin called the anniversary “historic,” and underscored that relations between Moscow and Sokhumi during the last ten years “have strengthened.”
On his part, Khajimba called Russia’s recognition of independence of Abkhazia an “embodiment of the centuries-old dream of our people,” and expressed hope that today’s meeting would further enhance their cooperation.
The meeting comes a day after German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit to Georgia, during which she expressed support to the country’s territorial integrity, and noted that what is happening in Georgia “is an injustice” and termed it an “occupation.”