MOSCOW, July 24 (Xinhua) -- Russian railroad troops have almost finished repair work on a railway in Georgia's breakaway region of Abkhazia and will withdraw from the self-proclaimed republic in early August, the Russian Defense Ministry said Thursday.
"Russian railroad troops have almost completed work to restore the rail line from Sukhumi to Ochamchira," Defense Ministry spokesman Alexander Drobyshevsky was quoted by the RIA Novosti news agency as saying.
A ceremony for resuming the operation of the fixed section will be held at the end of July, and the troops will return to their bases of permanent stationing (in Russia) after taking part in the ceremony, Drobyshevsky said.
About 300 Russian railroad troops arrived in Abkhazia on May 31as part of a humanitarian assistance plan. But Georgia accused Moscow of preparing for military intervention in the Georgia-Abkhaz conflict by sending troops to the rebel region.
Abkhazia and South Ossetia broke away from Georgia in the 1990sfollowing the collapse of the former Soviet Union. But their self-proclaimed independence is not internationally recognized.
The two breakaway regions have long been a source of tension between Russia and Georgia. Bilateral relations have drastically deteriorated since Russia's former president Vladimir Putin ordered the government to render assistance to the two self-proclaimed republics in mid-April.