Russia signs treaties with South Ossetia, Abkhazia

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Moscow, Sep 17 (UNI) Russian President Dmitry Medvedev today signed friendship and cooperation treaties with the leaders of Georgia's breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, promising them military and economic support.

Mr Medvedev signed the documents with Abkhazian President Sergei Bagapsh and South Ossetian President Eduard Kokoity, in the Kremlin.

Russia recognised as independent states the breakaway regions of Georgia last month after an armed conflict with the former Soviet republic.

Mr Medvedev said after the signing ceremony that Russia will not permit any new Georgian acts of aggression against Abkhazia and South Ossetia, and was ready to intervene militarily.

''No one should be in any doubt - we will not permit new reckless military acts,'' he said.

Under the treaties, Russia has pledged to help the two republics to protect their borders, and their signatories have granted each other the right to set up military bases in their respective territories.

The treaties also formalised economic cooperation between Russia and the two republics, and allowed dual citizenship for Russian, Abkhazian and South Ossetian residents.

Russia also agreed to unify its transportation, energy, and communications infrastructure with the two republics.

''The sides will be striving for the highest level of economic integration and will actively develop trade and economic cooperation, taking measures to unify energy and transportation systems as well as systems of communication and telecommunication,'' the treaties said.


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