ITAR-TASS: SUKHUM, ABKHAZIA. Pictured in this file image dated January 6, 2014 is Valeri Bganba, appointed Abkhazia acting president by the Parliament of the country. (Photo ITAR-TASS/ Vladimir Popov/ file image, 2014) Абхазия. Сухуми. 1 июня. Валерий Бганба, назначенный парламентом республики исполняющим обязанности президента Абхазии. Фото ИТАР-ТАСС/ Владимир Попов/ фото из архива

SUKHUM, January 13. /TASS/. Abkhazia’s Prime Minister Valery Bganba has assumed his duties as the republic’s president, a statement published on Monday on the official website of the Abkhaz government informs.

“In accordance with Article 66 of the Constitution of the Republic of Abkhazia, in case of resignation of the country’s head of state, the prime minister of the Republic of Abkhazia assumes the duties of the president. In this regard, I assume the duties of the President of the Republic of Abkhazia,” he informed, calling on the country’s residents “to make every effort to establish domestic stability with the aim to organize and hold the presidential election within the deadline stipulated in the Constitution.”

On Monday, Abkhazia’s parliament voted to accept the resignation of President Raul Khajimba. The repeat presidential election will take place on March 22, 2020.

Abkhazia plunged into a political crisis on January 9 when protesters gathered outside President Raul Khajimba’s office demanding his resignation and stormed into the building. The office remained under their control until late Sunday. Later on January 9, the Abkhaz parliament convened for an urgent meeting to adopt an appeal to the president asking him to step down, while the country’s Supreme Court on Friday overturned the Central Election Commission’s ruling on the election result and ordered a rerun scheduled for March 22. Khajimba claimed that he would appeal the decision made by the court and the commission but announced his resignation on Sunday.

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