2019 Abkhazian presidential election

Presidential elections were held in the partially recognized Republic of Abkhazia in 2019. As no candidate gathered more than 50% of the votes in the first round 25 August, a second was held on 8 September between the top two candidates, incumbent President Raul Khajimba of the Forum for the National Unity of Abkhazia and Alkhas Kvitsinia of Amtsakhara.[1] Khajimba was subsequently re-elected with a margin of less than 2% in the second round. On September 20, the Supreme Court in Abkhazia declared the decision of the Central Election Commission to recognize incumbent Raul Khajimba’s victory in the second round of the presidential election as legal.[2]

2019 Abkhazian presidential election

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8 September 2019 (second round)
2020 →
  Raul Khajimba 2015.jpg Noimage.png
Candidate Raul Khajimba Alkhas Kvitsinia
Party FNUA Amtsakhara
Running mate Aslan Bartsits Dmitri Dbar
Popular vote 39,741 38,742
Percentage 48.68% 47.46%

President before election

Raul Khajimba

Elected President

Raul Khajimba

In January 2020 the Abkhazian Supreme Court annulled the results, following protests against Khajimba.[3] Khajimba resigned the presidency on 12 January, and new elections were called for 22 March.[4]


The People's Assembly had originally set a date for 21 July.[5] In May 2019, the opposition demanded rescheduling the elections after the main opposition candidate Aslan Bzhania appeared to have been poisoned in Russia.[6] The elections were subsequently postponed to 25 August 2019 under pressure from supporters of the Bzhania.[7]


Registration for candidates officially opened on 26 June 2019.[8] Ten candidate initially registered;[9][10] but it was later determined that one candidate, Astamur Otirba, had not presented a Vice-President in time.[11]

Presidential candidate Career Party Vice Presidential candidate
Shamil Adzinba Deputy Prime Minister, 2014–2016 Rafael Ampar
Artur Ankvab Historian, Lecturer at Abkhazian State University Soslan Salakaya
Oleg Arshba Former Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Bartsyts
Leonid Dzapshba Leader of Akzaara, Minister of Internal Affairs, 2010–2016 Akzaara Vianor Ashba
Almas Japua Member of Parliament Independent Vadim Smyr
Astamur Kakalia Businessman, diplomat Astamur Ayba
Raul Khajimba Incumbent President of Abkhazia FNUA Aslan Bartsits
Alkhas Kvitsinia Chairman of Amtsakhara Amtsakhara Dmitri Dbar
Astamur Tarba Former head of the State Security Service of Abkhazia Tamazi Ketsba

Bzhaniya’s withdrawal from the electionEdit

Opposition leader Aslan Bzhania withdrew from the election on 15 July due to an apparent poisoning.[12]


Candidate First round Second round
Votes % Votes %
Raul Khajimba 20,544 26.33 39,741 48.68
Alkhas Kvitsinia 18,929 24.26 38,742 47.46
Oleg Arshba 18,665 23.92
Astamur Tarba 5,695 7.30
Leonid Dzapshba 4,935 6.33
Shamil Adzinba 3,579 4.59
Almas Japua 1,753 2.25
Artur Ankvab 1,403 1.80
Astamur Kakalia 841 1.08
None of the above 1,677 2.15 3,154 3.86
Invalid votes 4,770 2,246
Total 82,791 100 83,883 100
Registered voters/turnout 129,421 63.97 127,136 65.98
Source: Apsnypress, Apsnypress


Following the second round, Alkhas Kvitsinia contested the results in court.[13] After the elections, Khajimba re-appointed Valery Bganba as Prime Minister.[14]

Protests against Khajimba began on 9 January 2020, and on 10 January the Abkhazian Supreme Court annulled the results of the election.[3]


  1. ^ "Рауль Хаджимба и Алхас Квициния вышли во второй тур выборов" [Raul Khadjimba and Alkhas Kvitsinia enter the second round of elections] (in Russian). Apsnypress. 26 August 2019. Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  2. ^ "Abkhazia: court confirms victory of Khajimba in presidential elections despite opposition protest", JAM News, Sep 20, 2019, retrieved Nov 2, 2019
  3. ^ a b "Верховный суд Абхазии отменил итоги выборов президента" [Supreme Court of Abkhazia canceled the results of the presidential election] (in Russian). BBC News. 10 January 2020. Retrieved 10 January 2020.
  4. ^ RFE/RL (12 January 2020). "Abkhaz Leader Resigns Amid Ongoing Election-Fraud Protests In Breakaway Region". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Retrieved 12 January 2020.
  5. ^ "Abkhazia announces date of presidential elections". jam-news.net. 5 April 2019. Retrieved 5 April 2019.
  6. ^ Nikoladze, Tatia (17 May 2019). "Abkhaz parliament confirms opposition leader was poisoned, presidential elections may be rescheduled". Jam-News. Retrieved 19 May 2019.
  7. ^ Jamnews (28 May 2019). "Abkhaz presidential elections to take place 25 Aug., parliament confirms move". Jam-News. Retrieved 1 June 2019.
  8. ^ Giloyan, Elenora (27 June 2019). "Abkhazia: Whom to elect for president?". Jam News. Retrieved 28 June 2019.
  9. ^ "Центризбирком опубликовал биографические данные зарегистрирован ных кандидатов в президенты и виц" [Central Election Commission published biographical data of registered presidential and vice candidates] (in Russian). Apsnypress.info. 19 July 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  10. ^ "Центризбирком опубликовал биографические данные трех зарегистрированных кандидатов в президенты" [Central Election Commission published biographical data of three registered presidential candidates] (in Russian). Apsnypress.info. 26 July 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  11. ^ Meretukova, Ruzana (25 August 2019). "В Абхазии начались самые конкурентные выборы президента" [The most competitive presidential elections begin in Abkhazia]. RBK Group. Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  12. ^ "Лидер оппозиции Бжания снялся с выборов президента Абхазии из-за болезни" [Opposition leader Bzhania withdrew from presidential elections in Abkhazia due to illness] (in Russian). kommersant.ru. 15 July 2019. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
  13. ^ Noack, David X. (21 October 2019). "»Weiter so« in Abchasien" [Political standstill in Abkhazia] (in German). Neues Deutschland. Retrieved 22 October 2019.
  14. ^ "Abkhazia has a new prime minister – the old one". JAM News. 14 October 2019. Retrieved 22 October 2019.