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Georgia: Russia To Pay For Border Guards

Tbilisi, 13 September 1996 (RFE/RL) -- Russia will pay 60 percent of the cost of guarding Georgia's borders, says the head of Russia's border guard service.

General Andrei Nikolayev said Russia will also finance border guard services of other Commonwealth of Independent States members, reports RFE/RL's Georgian Service.

Nikolayev made the announcement at a meeting of CIS border service commanders in Tbilisi yesterday. The CIS commanders signed a number of agreements to cooperate protecting their borders, uniform border control regulations and exchange information.

They also agreed to urge leaders of CIS countries to extend until 1997 the mandate of the Russian-led CIS force guarding the Tajik-Afghan border.

However, Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze's press secretary, Vakhtang Abashidze, had said earlier today that Georgia and Azerbaijan would not sign two of the agreements adopted at the meeting. Abashidze did not elaborate.