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24 Aug, 2008 10:51

Russian MPs to consider Abkhazia’s independence appeal

Russia's State Duma and Federation Council are due to discuss the status of Abkhazia on Monday. The Moscow session follows a gathering in the republic's capital, Sukhumi.

On August 21, thousands of people demanded international recognition for their motherland.

Abkhazia proclaimed its independence from Georgia in the early 1990s. However, in the wake of the fighting in South Ossetia, its leaders say there's no more time to wait.

They're asking Russia to protect their republic and be the first to recognise its independence.

Sergey Shamba, Abkhazia’s Foreign Minister said: “Parliament has accepted the appeal to recognise the independence of Abkhazia.”

“The appeal is addressed to the government of the Russian Federation as well to presidents and parliaments of the world. Provided Russia recognises the independence of Abkhazia, we hope to receive guarantees of our security and the economic development of the republic,” he said.