Azerbaijan, Baku / Тrend corr E. Huseynov / Military equipment was withdrawn from the 12th Russian military base in the Georgian city of Batumi on 21 June. The equipment will be delivered to Russia via Azerbaijan. The train is the seventh withdrawn from Georgia to Russia since May. The train consists of 32 open goods trucks and one carriage loaded with 12 BM-21 jet systems (Grad), 13 fighting intelligence-landing machines, and 32 automobiles of different modification, according to the Azerbaijani Embassy to Georgia. The next batch of equipment will be moved on 28 June.
An agreement between Azerbaijan and Russia on the transportation of the property via Azerbaijan was reached last summer at inter-governmental level. By the end of August 14 trains loaded with property and equipment will be removed from Georgia. The most part of them will be delivered to Russia. Five trains will go to Armenia to the 102nd Russian base in Gumri. According to the Russian Defence Ministry, in compliance with an agreement between Russia and Georgia the 62nd Russian military base located in the city of Akhalkalaki is to be withdrawn by the end of 2007 and the second and the last 12th Russian military base located in the city of Batumi is to be withdrawn in 2008.
Transportation of the equipment via Azerbaijan enables Russia to simplify organization of troop withdrawal and to decrease the expenditure of the Russian Defence Ministry, General Vladimir Isakov, the Russian Deputy Defence Minister, said earlier.
The Russian-Georgian agreement on the terms and order of the temporary functioning and withdrawal of Russian military bases and other military facilities of the Group of Russian Troops in Transcaucasia located in Georgia was signed on 31 March, 2006.