Putin to Meet with Armenian, Abkhazian Leaders

MOSCOW, March 12 (RIA Novosti) – Russian President Vladimir Putin will on Tuesday hold bilateral meetings with his Armenian and Abkhazian counterparts, Serzh Sargsyan and Alexander Ankvab, who are in Russia on a visit.

Armenia is a traditional priority partner for Russia. The two countries’ trade in 2012 grew 22.3 percent on the previous year to $1.2 billion.

For Sargsyan, the visit will be his first foreign trip since his February 18 reelection. The previous meeting between Putin and Sargsyan took place December 19, 2012 in Moscow.

“During the talks, the sides will discuss further development of Russian-Armenian relations, regional problems and prospects to deepen interaction in the CIS,” the Kremlin reported.

At a meeting between Putin and Ankvab, the sides will discuss bilateral relations. Bilateral trade in 2012 totaled $292.2 million.

The two leaders, whose countries had established diplomatic relations in September 2008, previously met in May 2012 in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi.

Georgia broke off diplomatic ties with Russia after the two nations fought a brief war over Abkhazia and South Ossetia in August 2008. Moscow has signed economic and military agreements with both republics since recognizing them as independent shortly after the war, and keeps ruling out any negotiations on their current status.


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