The de facto president of occupied Abkhazia, Aslan Bzhania, has dismissed Inal Ardzinba from the position of Minister of Foreign Affairs and assigned the duties to the so-called deputy minister, Irakli Tuzhba.

The so-called president issued the order today, April 7th. The reason for Inal Ardzinba's dismissal has not been provided, but reports indicate that he has been transferred to the de facto State Security Service for questioning. Furthermore, he has been unable to leave the occupied region for approximately a week due to a ban imposed by Bzhania.

Inal Ardzinba, 34 years old, was appointed as the head of the so-called Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Abkhazia on November 17, 2021. He is a relative of the first so-called president, Vladislav Ardzinba. Prior to this appointment, Inal Ardzinba worked in the Department of Socio-Economic Cooperation with the CIS Countries, Abkhazia, and South Ossetia in the Administration of the President of Russia, and he also led the Department of Supervision of Ukraine. In 2015, the Prosecutor's Office of Ukraine charged Ardzinba in absentia with preparing to change the state border of Ukraine, recruiting accomplices, and creating preconditions for the illegal declaration of the sovereign state entity Bessarabia in the Odessa region, as well as for participating in a terrorist organization in the so-called Donetsk People's Republic. Since 2015, Ukraine has announced a search for Ardzinba.

After being appointed as the so-called Minister of Foreign Affairs in the occupied region of Georgia, Inal Ardzinba actively criticized international organizations. He referred to the US State Department, the US Agency for International Development (USAID), and the European Union as "actors of aggressive isolation of Abkhazia". In line with his decision, USAID-funded projects promoting contacts between Georgians and Abkhazians were banned in Abkhazia. USAID/Caucasus Mission Director John Pennell was declared persona non grata.

Inal Ardzinba supported the adoption of the law on so-called foreign agents in Abkhazia, which Aslan Bzhania submitted for discussion in the de facto parliament in February of this year.

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