Alan Gaglojew wins the pick
South Ossetia’s new leader wants union with Russia
05/09/2022, 8:24 p.m.
Thanks to Russian support, South Ossetia declared its independence from Georgia in 2008. Apparently, this is not enough for the region’s new leader, Alan Gagloyev. After replacing the incumbent, he aims for unification with Russia.
The conflicted region of South Ossetia, which broke away from the South Caucasus republic of Georgia, continues to struggle for unification with Russia with a new ruler loyal to Moscow. Opposition activist Alan Gagloyev, 41, won the internationally unrecognized vote against incumbent President Anatoly Bibilow, as announced by the election committee in the capital Tskhinvali.
The people of South Ossetia have dreamed for centuries of uniting with the people of North Ossetia, Gagloyev said in a recent interview. As a result, South Ossetia could unite with the Russian Republic of North Ossetia. The prerequisite is that Russia is also ready to host South Ossetia, he said.
More than 53% vote for Gagloyev
Gagloyev held firm in a runoff election on Sunday, which was criticized by Georgia and the EU. After counting more than 85% of the ballots, he obtained 53.67% of the votes. Bibilow admitted defeat. He obtained 41.3% of the vote. About 39,000 people were called to vote. There was initially no turnout information. In the first round of voting on April 10, when five candidates were in the running, turnout was reported at just under 74%.
Russia recognized South Ossetia as an independent state in 2008 after a war with Georgia – as did the region of Abkhazia – and stationed thousands of troops in the area. Abkhazia, on the other hand, has no plans to join Russia, a local parliament spokesman said. Russia is a strategic and close partner, but Abkhazia “according to the constitution is an independent country”.