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Weapons which were removed from the Kodor Valley, Information provided by the Ministry of Defence of Abkhazia

According to the Defence Ministry of Abkhazia, during the operation to clear Georgian military formations from the upper part of the Kodor Valley, upto 50 truckloads of automatic weapons and ammunition for different types of weaponry, abandoned by the Georgian army, have been removed.

Among the quantity of arms discovered were:

• Upto 10,000 rounds for hand-held anti-tank grenade-launchers of type RPG-7;

• Upto 600 individual rounds for anti-tank grenade-launchers of the type PG-9;

• Upto 1,500 rounds for sub-barrel grenade-launchers;

• Upto 600 individual shells for 82mm mortars;

• Upto 350 unguided rocket-missiles (NURS) S-8;

• 124,000 5.45mm cartridges (one KAMaz truck-load);

• 43,200 cartridges with tracer-bullets TS;

• 8 individual 122mm howitzers D-30 plus 1,500 artillery-shells for them;

• 804 individual shells for 60mm mortars of American manufacture;

• four multi-purpose, light-armoured vehicles (MTLB);

• four anti-aircraft placements of the type ZU-23-2;

• one 57mm cannon;

• one rocket volley-firing system LAR.

Also removed was a large amount of military-technical material for military units (tents, magazines for weapons, oil-cans, cartridge-pouches, spare-parts for weapons, belts, cases, etc…).

‘Everything which has been recovered to date from the Kodor Valley (specifically the arms and ammunition) is being held in depots of the Ministry of Defence. Reconnoitring continues at the present time in the K’odor Valley to uncover places for the housing of stores with ammunition and arms belonging to the units of the Georgian army,’ stated Gen. Anatoly Zajtsev, head of the General HQ of the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Abkhazia.

Apsny Press Information

In July 2006 on the pretence of fighting criminal structures (more accurately, the former representative of the president of Georgia in the Kodor Valley, Emzar K’vitsiani and his supporters) Georgia introduced military units into the upper part of the Kodor Valley, which was not under the control of the Abkhazian forces. Saakashvili planned to supplant Kvitsinia with structures of the so-called ‘legitimate government in exile’.

That the main aim of Georgia in the Kodor Valley was in no way to combat criminality is plain from the fact that the Georgian authorities opposed the insistent demands of Abkhazia to demilitarise the Kodor Valley.

In vain did Abkhazia demand strict observance of the Moscow Accord of 14th May 1994, itself refraining from armed operations to disarm the units present in the Valley which Georgia provided with arms and styled ‘forces of self-defence’.

Georgia was manifestly not interested in either demilitarisation or, correspondingly, in international monitoring of the Kodor Valley. It viewed the Valley as a platzdarm for destabilising the situation and, ultimately, for the start of an operation to restore the so-called ‘territorial integrity of Georgia’. In his day the chairman of the Defence and Security Committee of the Georgian parliament, Givi Targamadze, characterised the special operation in the Kodor Valley as the start of the process to restore Georgia’s territorial integrity. The Kodor Valley – ‘This is a strategically important platzdarm only a 5-minute flight away from Sukhum,’ he declared.

A dangerous position was also taken by the international community, which, willingly or unwillingly, played into the hands of the Georgian authorities in seeking to substitute the Russian peace-keeping forces by an international police-force. Thus, in the declaration of the Council of Europe of 24th July 2006, there was also talk of the need of the swift introduction of international police-forces into Abkhazia.

The transference of the so-called ‘autonomists’ into the Kodor Valley and also the declaration of the Georgian authorities that only they represent the ‘legitimate authority’ in Abkhazia led to the lack of any point to the negotiating process.

The Abkhazian side withdrew from participation in the Georgian-Abkhazian negotiating process until the Georgian military formations and governmental structures of the so-called ‘autonomous republic of Abkhazia’ were withdrawn from the Valley.

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