On September 30, 1993 Georgian troops retreated across the Inguri river, leaving behind Abkhazia, one of the richest provinces of the former Soviet republic whose independence was regained in April, 1991 as a result of the collapse of the USSR. Simultaneously with the evacuation of Georgian troops, Abkhazia was abandoned by almost 80% of its civilian population (Georgians, Greeks, Armenians and others). This was one of the results of an “unknown war” of 1991-93, that added one more destabilizing element to the whole bunch of conflicts in the troubled Caucasus. Another result was the establishment of a self proclaimed “Republic of Abkhazia” – an isolated territory under loose control of a violent, non-democratic regime, officially recognized by no government in the world.
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