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Georgia: President Criticizes Russia Over Military


Tblisi, 10 March 1997 (RFE/RL) - Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze criticized Russia over military issues today.

Speaking in his weekly radio address, Shevardnadze accused Russia of stealing the Georgian share of the disputed Black Sea Fleet.

Russia and Ukraine have been arguing over the ownership of the Black Sea Fleet since the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union. Georgia has only recently joined the dispute.

Shevardnadze also repeated his call for Russian peacekeepers to take on a broader and more active role in bringing about a settlement in Georgia's breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

The Georgian leader has come under pressure from lawmakers who want the Russians out.
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