23 Sep 2019 18:07

Russia to help Abkhazia make regular army out of guerilla army - expert

MOSCOW. Sept 23 (Interfax) - Russia's assistance with the modernization of the Abkhaz Armed Forces de facto means that Russia will help create a regular Abkhaz army that will be capable of effectively interacting with the Russian military, Russian military expert and retired Col. Gen. Leonid Ivashov said.

"When we talk about the modernization of the Abkhaz Armed Forces, it would be more correct to say that we need to be talking about the creation of the regular armed forces of the Abkhaz Republic," Ivashov, who was previously head of the Russian Defense Ministry's Main Directorate for International Military Cooperation, told Interfax on Monday.

The Abkhaz regular army should effectively coordinate with the Russian armed forces "because the main tasks associated with ensuring the military security of Abkhazia are achieved by the Russian military bases and Russian troops."

Earlier on September 23, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the Russian Defense Ministry and the Russian Foreign Ministry to hold talks with Abkhazia and sign an agreement on financing the modernization of the Abkhaz Armed Forces.