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What can we expect after the resignation of Inal Ardzinba?
Georgian Dream is again going to pass the Russian law, which will restrict free and critical opinions in Georgia. The adoption of the bill will block the path to the European Union for the people of Georgia.

The resignation or dismissal of Inal Ardzinba, the de-facto minister of foreign affairs of occupied Abkhazia, caused mixed reactions in the Abkhazian society and political circles.

The main question was related to the real reason for the resignation of Inal Ardzinba, who was considered to be Moscow's favorite - Did Ardzinba fail to live up to the Kremlin's expectations, or, on the contrary, is he waiting for a promotion and a new career? Initially, information was spread in Abkhazia that Ardzinba was arrested, however, later he himself commented that he was in Moscow and was preparing for new duties. The news about the arrest soon turned out to be baseless and became a desirable story due to the unpopularity of Inal Ardzinba in Abkhazia. It seems that Ardzinba made a statement with vague hints about his whereabouts and future plans in order to dispel the rumours.

It is believed in Sokhumi and Tbilisi that in light of the warming of relations with the Georgian authorites, Ardzinba's rigid methods seemed out of context for Moscow, and it was Moscow that made the decision to remove him from active politics.
On the other hand, Abkhaz analysts agree that the dismissal of Inal Ardzinba, or as he says, voluntary resignation, should be considered in the light of the next year's presidential elections. From the day of his appointment, Ardzinba had been considered a competitor of the current de-facto president Aslan Bzhania in the upcoming presidential elections. Accordingly, with his departure, Bzhania's electoral chances have increased, which may indicate that Aslan Bzhania and his de facto government have well fulfilled Moscow's tasks.

Will Aslan Bzhania be able to reach the election period as a candidate without a competitor? Or may he have a new counterweight candidate? Or can we expect the return of Inal Ardzinba in another role? It is also interesting who will be the conduit of Russia's narrative that it is the direct representative of Russia that maintains the status quo for large ethnic enclaves in ethnically diverse Abkhazia and preserves the Abkhazian ethnocracy.

The Democracy Research Institute follows the impact of Ardzinba's departure from the post of de facto foreign minister in the Armenian and Georgian ethnic communities living in occupied Abkhazia, although it is known that there is an expectation of easing pressure on the civil sector, and in the wake of this, a more promising environment may be created for the activities of human rights organizations, especially in the Gali district.