3 or 4 candidates likely to participate in Abkhazia's early presidential election

3 or 4 candidates likely to participate in Abkhazia
# 04 June 2014 22:49 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. None of the potential candidates in Abkhazia's early presidential election has stated their intention to run for the republic's top executive post, but experts expect rivalry between three or four hopefuls, APA reports quoting ITAR-TASS.

There is no doubt though that chairman of the National Unity Forum opposition party, lawmaker Raul Khadzhimba is one of them.

"It is difficult to predict who will be next Abkhazian president," former secretary of Abkhazia's Security Council, historian Stanislav Lakoba said.

He told ITAR-TASS on Wednesday that 80 days before the election, nobody had yet announced plans to run for president.

This tactic is quite logical though. On Tuesday, head of Abkhazia's Central Election Commission Batal Tabagua told ITAR-TASS that the support groups and political parties that nominated presidential candidates would be registered from June 25 through July 14.

Among the potential candidates, Lakoba named Raul Khadzhimba, leader of Abkhazia People's Party Yakub Lakoba and chairman of the Party of Abkhazia's Economic Development Beslan Butba.

"There might be other persons who have not been involved in Abkhazia's politics recently, but now might come back," the expert said.

Lakoba said "nobody can conceive Abkhazia's future without Russia," yet he made it clear that the decisions concerning further integration should not be made secretly, without people's participation. Also, he believes that Abkhazia should retain a certain degree of sovereignty.

As for lifting the ban on purchasing property in Abkhazia, Lakoba did not rule out that such a decision might be made by the administration of the new president. "I believe it is possible because this will make current transactions transparent," he said.

Meanwhile, supporters of the Abkhazian President Alexander Ankvab are continuing consultations over their candidate in the August election.

"As for candidates for the post of head of state, I'll talk about my supporters; I don't want to talk about the opponents," former Prime Minister Leonid Lakerbaya told ITAR-TASS.