Russia’s Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, arrived in breakaway Abkhazia on August 12.
“It is interesting to see how Abkhazia has changed,” Putin said in an interview with Abkhaz journalists in Sochi before the visit.
“We are now preparing package of documents on developing economic, social spheres, as well as on security and border protection issues – all these issues will be the focus of our talks with the Abkhaz leadership,” Putin said in the interview transcript of which was posted on the Russian government’s website on August 12.
He also said that the Georgian leadership should have shown “respect” to Abkhazians and South Ossetians and Tbilisi should have “acknowledged its past mistakes.”
“We have been telling [this] to the current Georgian leadership for many times,” Putin continued. “I personally was telling them to show patience and gain respect, authoritativeness and trust of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. It is possible to achieve territorial integrity only through this approach – that’s what I have been speaking about then and I still think so.”
“What was their [the Georgian authorities] response? ‘Yes, yes, we understand and that’s what we will do’. But what has been done in practice? Everything contrary to that,” Putin added.