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Leader of Georgia's rebel Abkhazia region dies

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Leader of Georgia's rebel Abkhazia region dies

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Georgia’s breakaway Abkhazia region is in mourning after the death of its president.

Sergei Bagapsh, 62, died in hospital in Moscow from complications following lung surgery.

In power since 2005, he won a second term as leader of the separatist region four years later.

Russia has provided Abkhazia with security since rebuffing a Georgian military assault to retake control of rebel South Ossetia in a war in 2008.

Both disputed regions shook off Tbilisi’s rule in wars of secession in the early 1990s although Georgia still considers them part of its territory.

After the 2008 conflict, Moscow formally recognised South Ossetia and Abkhazia’s independence.