South Ossetian president Kokoity strongly criticized by Russians

One of the former officials in South Ossetia, Anatoliy Barankevich in a big interview for Kommersant daily accused the president of this tiny contentious republic of usurping political power.

South Ossetia became known worldwide during August war between Georgia and Russia. South Ossetia broke away from Georgia in the beginning of 1990s and when Georgians tried to retake it, Russians retaliated with an overwhelming force and subsequently officially recognized South Ossetia as a sovereign country.

Several months later former South Ossetian official, that actually happen to come from Russian military circles alleged that president Kokoity created 1937 style climate in the country, persecuting his personal rivals, trying to stay in power indefinitely and other misbehavior, including embezzlement of the funds, that Moscow sends to South Ossetia and even a potential threat on Kokoity’s side to defect to … the West, taking South Ossetia with him and asking Russia to withdraw forces from the republic (an unlikely course of events)

Apparently there has been a conflict going on between the newly confident Kokoity, that wants to concentrate all power in his hands, including the power over all funding that comes from Moscow. But not only Kokoity is now confident, so is Moscow and it demands much greater share in decision making and much greater control over the government in South Ossetia.

The result might be Kokoity’s resignation, as his current term still allows him to stay in power for another 3 years, which is too much for Moscow to bear. In his place another Moscow loyalist will be sought, but with more credible manager’s skills, perhaps. Because Kokoity, besides having a criminal’s background, is also an extremely poor manager, that has achieved almost no progress in South Ossetian reconstruction, even though considerable funds were allotted by Moscow.

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