The State Duma is planning to consider a draft resolution dealing with Georgian-Abkhazian relations /Abkhazia is a self-proclaimed sovereign republic on the Georgian territory/, told journalists Alexei Mitrofanov, one of the leaders of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia. According to Mitrofanov, the draft resolution will be discussed at a plenary session of the parliament's lower house later this week. The draft urges Russian President Vladimir Putin to take necessary measures to help settle the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict peacefully on the basis of principles and norms of international law, and to give a resolute rebuff to all those who want to deploy a NATO military contingent on the Russian border and solve the Abkhazian problem by force. Authors of the draft recommend the Russian foreign ministry to consider simplifying the procedure of granting Russian citizenship to Abkhazians. In Mitrofanov's opinion, withdrawal of Russian peacekeeping forces from Georgia may result in more bloodshed between Georgia and Abkhazia. The draft also urges Georgian President Edward Shevardnadze to"refrain from another armed clash with the Abkhazian side."
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The Russian forces destroyed a column of NATO armoured vehicles that had been delivered to the Ukrainian army.