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Tbilisi Concerned Over Kremlin-Proposed Abkhazia Pact

Tbilisi has voiced concern over a reported Kremlin proposal to create a joint armed force of Russia and Georgia's breakaway Abkhazia region.

The Georgian Foreign Ministry issued a statement on October 15 calling on Moscow not to sign a draft Russia-Abkhazia treaty on alliance and integration that was published by some media outlets in Abkhazia on October 13.

On October 14, the chairman of Georgia's parliamentary committee for foreign affairs, Tedo Japaridze, said the draft treaty "speaks directly about annexation" of Abkhazia by Russia.

He said Tbilisi should protest by staying away from a round of informal dialogue with Moscow in Prague this week.

Georgian Prime Minister's special envoy for relations with Russia, Zurab Abashidze, left for Prague on October 15 to meet Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin as part of the dialogue launched in late 2012.

Abashidze said the issue would be discussed at the Prague talks.

Based on reporting by and Interfax

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