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Seeking Recognition: Abkhazia

The long road to statehood for Georgia's former province

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Abkhazia, once known as the “Soviet Riviera”, is a tiny country on the Black Sea coast that broke away from Georgia in the 90s and earned recognition from Moscow and a few other states after the 2008 war with Tbilisi. Georgia views the independence declaration as a violation of territorial integrity, but for the locals, it was rectifying years of historical injustice. Abkhaz people say their land was forcibly incorporated into Soviet Georgia because the authorities under Joseph Stalin, were intent upon eroding Abkhaz national identity.

Abkhazians celebrate Russia's recognition of Abkhazia's independence
Jubilant locals wave flags of South Ossetia, Russia and Abkhazia in front of the former parliament building on August 26, 2008, when Moscow recognised Georgia’s former provinces as independent states.

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