22 Feb 2012

President of Abkhazia Survives Assassination Attempt

Unidentified assassins tried on Wednesday to kill the president of Abkhazia, a Russian-backed rebel Georgian enclave, employing automatic rifles, grenade launchers and a powerful roadside bomb in an assault that raised fresh questions about Moscow’s ability to preserve order there.

The president, Aleksandr Z. Ankvab, survived the attack without injury, but at least one bodyguard died and two more were seriously wounded. It was the sixth attempt on Mr. Ankvab’s life in less than a decade, a testament to the volatility of the enclave, Abkhazia.  

Reached by telephone at his office in Abkhazia’s capital, Mr. Ankvab’s voice was faint and shaky. “I’m sorry, I can’t talk right now, especially about this topic, ” he said, when asked about the assassination attempt.  

The attack was likely to provoke new anxiety in Moscow, which has been struggling to damper recent political tremors in Abkhazia and another breakaway Georgian enclave, South Ossetia. After its war with Georgia in 2008, Russia defied international condemnation and recognized both regions as independent.  


From South Ossetia to War With Georgia - The Moscow Times