Abkhazia to monitor Georgian-U.S. exercises in Black Sea

SUKHUM (Interfax) - Abkhazia plans to closely monitor upcoming Georgian-U.S. military exercises but will not put its armed forces on alert, Abkhaz Deputy Defense Minister Garry Kupalba said.

"The Abkhaz troops will not be put on alert because of the planned Georgian-U.S. exercises in the Black Sea. We will closely follow these exercises," Kupalba said.

Abkhaz armed forces as well as the Russian 7th military base and Russian border guard units stationed in Abkhazia have enough forces and resources to counter any aggression attempt on Georgia's part, he said.

"A joint action plan for Abkhaz armed forces and Russian troops stationed in the republic has been developed in case Georgia launches military actions against Abkhazia," he said.

The USS John L. Hall (FFG-32) entered Georgia' territorial waters on Thursday morning and has been standing at anchorage near the Poti port, the Georgian border police told Interfax.

The ship is to take part in joint exercises with personnel from the Georgian coastguard service. It is to call at the Batumi port on March 1.

The U.S. ship's visit will last until March 4.




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