14 January 2005 -- Election officials in Georgia's separatist republic of Abkhazia today pronounced Sergei Bagapsh the winner of the repeat presidential vote of 12 January.
Final results released by the Central Election Commission show Bagapsh won the presidential race with more than 91.5 of the vote. His only rival, People's Party Chairman Yakub Lakoba, garnered less than 5 percent.
Lakoba told Russia's ITAR-TASS news agency that he believes the election was not democratic, but said he will not appeal its outcome.
Outgoing President Vladislav Ardzinba today congratulated Bagapsh on his victory.
The repeat presidential was ordered after a postelection crisis that last fall brought Abkhazia to the brink of civil war.
Bagapsh, who had technically won the previous polls in October, this time ran on a joint ticket with his former main rival, ex-Prime Minister Raul Khadjimba.
(ITAR-TASS/RIA-Novosti/Regnum/Interfax)Related stories:"Bagapsh Set For Landslide Victory In Abkhazia"
and"Bagapsh Says Abkhaz-Russian Relations A Priority"