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12 Feb, 2010 05:44

Return of the pres: Abkhaz leader goes into second term

A "simple, but dignified" inauguration ceremony of Abkhazian President Sergey Bagapsh - elected for another presidential term – was held on Friday in the capital, Sukhum.

"The inauguration is outlined in the country's law, and all events will be in strict compliance with it. On a request from the president, the ceremony will be simple, but dignified," said presidential aide Valery Arshba.The ceremony was held at the country's State Philarmonic Hall. Some 130 guests were set to attended, including Russian Federation Council Speaker Sergey Mironov, Russian governors and mayors and delegations from Nicaragua and Venezuela, which have also recognized the country's independence.South Ossetian President Eduard Kokoity was also in attendance, as well as the heads of de-facto independent ex-Soviet states, Transdniester and Nagorny-Karabakh.The winning candidate was required to gain a majority of 50% plus one vote. According to the preliminary official results announced by the Abkhazian Central Election Commission, incumbent President Sergey Bagapsh won 61.16% of the vote, with his former vice president, Raul Khadjimba, trailing with some 15%.Bagapsh, 60, has been the president of the former Georgian region since January 2005.Two years ago, Russia recognized Abkhazia's independence following Georgia's attack against another Caucuses republic – South Ossetia.Abkhazia was also under threat from Tbilisi troops, but fortunately the war did not spread to the republic.Much of the republic’s infrastructure remains in a state of disrepair after the 1992 conflict, when the break with Georgia occurred, and there are thousands of buildings across Abkhazia that still lie in ruins. However, the republic now relies on its resorts, natural resources and transportation industry to help restore what has been damaged.