As the issuance of new passports continues in Abkhazia, many non–ethnic Abkhaz — ethnic Armenians, Russians, Georgians, and others — fear the reason behind the new regulations is to deprive them of citizenship.
Stella Adleyba, 26, OC Media’s correspondent in Abkhazia.
‘When the war in Abkhazia began, I was only a year old. My Dad went to the front in the first days of the war, so we were left alone: my mother, my brother, and me. Of course, I don’t remember what happened in those days, but all of my life I have listened to the stories of my mother and brother about what we went through back then.’
An entire generation has grown up in Abkhazia with no direct experience of the 1992–1993 war. For many of these young people, a collective memory of the conflict still persists, and attitudes towards Georgia and Georgians are often extremely hostile.
With between 60–80 road deaths recorded every year, Abkhazia has one of the highest traffic-related mortality rates in the world. Repeated government promises year on year to tackle the problem have come to nothing, and the death toll continues to rise.