13 October 2014, 09:00

Week in the Caucasus: review of main events of October 6-12

Election of the head of the KBR by its parliament; negotiations during Geneva debates; Armenia's accession to the EAEU, – see the review of these and other events in the Caucasus during the week of October 6-12, 2014, prepared by the "Caucasian Knot".

KBR's MPs elect republic's leader and start forming a new government

On October 9, at an extraordinary session of the Parliament of the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic (KBR) of the 5th convocation, the MPs unanimously voted for Yuri Kokov, nominated for the post of the republic's leader. His candidacy was supported by all 70 MPs. On the same day Yuri Kokov took office, and on October 10, the Government of the KBR (Cabinet of Ministers) resigned. On October 11, the Parliament of the KBR gave its consent to Yuri Kokov to appoint Aliy Musukov to the post of the KBR's Prime Minister; while the new Regional leader approved a new structure of the republic's bodies of and signed seven decrees on appointments to the KBR's Government. Yuri Kokov also awarded Arsen Kanokov, the former head of the KBR, with the powers of a Senator (a member of the Russia's Council of Federation from the KBR).

Geneva debates discuss non-use of force and some humanitarian issues

On October 8, the Geneva-based UN's Palais des Nations hosted the 29th round of debates on security and stability in Transcaucasia. One of the key issues for the delegation of Abkhazia was the adoption of the declaration, coordinated with Georgia, of non-use of force. As stated by Vyacheslav Chirikba, the Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs of Abkhazia, Georgia refuses to sign the document, demanding that Russia should also adopt it. However, Russia refuses, claiming that this is not a Russian-Georgian, but an Abkhazian- and South-Ossetian-Georgian conflict, said Sergey Markedonov, an Associate Professor of the Division of Foreign Regional Studies and Foreign Policies of the Russian State Humanitarian University (RSHU). At the end of the sessions of two working groups, the co-moderator of Geneva debates noted the focus of all the parties on preserving the Geneva format, despite the existing disagreements.

Armenia joins EAEU

The Treaty on Armenia's Accession of to the EurAsian Economic Union (EAEU), which was formed on the basis of the EurAsian Economic Community (EurAsEC) and will start since January 1, 2015, was signed on October 10 at the CIS Summit in Minsk. Despite the protests of some Armenian political circles, on October 2, the Armenian government approved the draft agreement on accession to the EAEU. The agreement on establishment of a new Union was signed in May 2014 signed by the leaders of Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus. In the opinion of Armenian authorities, the accession to the EAEU and the Customs Union meets the economic and political interests of the country; however, critics of the process say that Russia – the leading power of the EAEU – is not able to guarantee the security of the Union's member-states; and the Armenia's membership in the EAEU is a threat to the freedom of speech in the country.

Sochi welcomes Formula-1 race

The first ever Russian Formula-1 motor race took place on October 10 in Sochi. The racing programme was opened by free races on the "Sochi Autodrome". On October 11, Lewis Hamilton, a pilot of the "Mercedes" team won the qualification, in which pilots were fighting for their places in the starting grid. The race itself was scheduled for October 12; and it was won by the above Lewis Hamilton; while the Russian pilot-driver Daniil Kvyat took the fourteenth place. According to the Security Service, the race was visited by 65,000 spectators. At the same time, as the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent reported, the ticket worth 50,000 roubles remained unsold; and because of the shortage of cheaper tickets, many local residents were not able to see the magnificent race.

Mikhail Chernyshov, Mayor of Rostov-on-Don, resigns and goes to work for the Government of Rostov Region

On October 6, Mikhail Chernyshov, the Mayor of Rostov-on-Don, resigned; and on the following day the City Duma Deputies accepted his resignation. Chernyshov said that he would go to work at the Regional Government in the post of Deputy Governor and will be in charge of the development of the Rostov city agglomeration and foreign economic relations of the Rostov Region. On October 7, Chernyshov was appointed Deputy Governor of the Rostov Region.

Rostov bank "Doninvest" deprived of license to conduct banking operations

On October 9, the Bank "Doninvest", located in Rostov-on-Don, was deprived of its license to conduct banking operations. The decision was made by the Bank of Russia for a number of reasons, including the failure to regulate its banking activities in accordance with federal laws and inability to satisfy the claims of its creditors. The problems of the bank became known back in late September. Then, the "Doninvest" stopped issuing the money left in its depositors' accounts; and the Central Bank of Russia restricted its ability to take new deposits from individuals.

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