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Will the Russian ships stay in Sevastopol?2010-02-20 00:42
The military agreements signed between Russia and Abkhazia this week sprang up a lot of rumors in the world informational space concerning the possible transference of the Black Sea fleet from the Crimea to the Abkhaz port of Ochamchira after 2017. As is known, according to an agreement with Ukraine, Russia is to withdraw its fleet from Sevastopol right by that time. At the same time, according to the joint border control document, the FSS Border Control cutters are already patrolling the Abkhaz shore. Is the prospect of shifting the location of the Russian ships within the former USSR territory real?
The construction of the base in the Abkhaz port of Ochamchira was discussed between Moscow and Sukhum a year ago. At that time, an unnamed representative of the General Headquarters of the Russia Navy reported that the base in Abkhazia would be used considering the possible threat of subversive and terrorist acts on the part of the Georgian special services, "which means that the base will be equipped with all the possible types of underwater, sub-surface, air and land protection means", - he added.
Besides, the sea base in Ochamchira is not going to be built anew: it will be a reconstructed former Soviet Navy facility. The bottom will be deepened and the shore infrastructure will be restored. The works are expected to take several years. Ultimately, twenty Black Sea fleet ships will be based there (according to certain data, there will also be several diesel submarines).
This week, Abkhaz leader Sergey Bagapsh has visited the Russian capital. Together with Russian President Dmitriy Medvedev he signed an agreement on the united military base in the Abkhaz territory. The document is valid for 49 years with an option of being automatically prolonged for the 15-year periods.
Some media, including the Georgian media, hurriedly associated the signed document with the expiration of the treaty signed between Russia and Ukraine about basing the Black Seal fleet ships in the Crimea. The official Tbilisi immediately responded to the forecasts that appeared in the world informational space. Tbilisi believes that the possible transference of the Black Sea fleet to Abkhazia is going to create a threat not only to the Georgian safety but to the whole region as well, as Rosbalt reports.