In the self declared Republic of Abkhazia opposition leader Raul Khadzhimba has said the President, Alexander Ankvab, is no longer legitimate and his powers have been transferred to the parliament and the Provisional Council of People’s Trust. The local security forces however seem to remain loyal to Ankvab who is reported to have taken refuge in the Russian base in Gudauta. Russian officials who arrived from Moscow on Wednesday, are continuing with efforts to broker an agreement between the two sides. The politicial stand-off is an embarrassment for Russia which is one of a handfull of countries that recognises Abkhaz independence.
Georgian-Belarus relations improved after 2008, when unexpectedly Belarus did not follow Russia in recognising the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia despite Kremlin pressure.
First Vice-President Aliyeva noted that Azerbaijan is located at the crossroads between the civilizations of the East and West, and is one of the few countries that are a member of both the Council of Europe and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.