On December 2, 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin assigned the grade rank of Full State Counsellor of the Russian Federation, Third Class (corresponding to the rank of Major-General) to 27-year-old Inal Ardzinba, who is wanted in Ukraine on charges of terrorism, reported the Russian news agency Sputnik.
Ardzinba is the head of the Department of the Presidential Administration for Social and Economic Cooperation with the CIS member states, Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
Ardzinba has been wanted under Article 258-3 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine - "participation in the DPR terrorist organization and the promotion of its activities - since 2015".
In addition, the investigation found that during the period of January to April 2015 the suspect, in collusion with other persons, was engaged in the recruitment of like-minded individuals on Russian territory, which paved the way for the illegal declaration of a sovereign state formation, "Bessarabia", on the territory of Odessa. Bessarabia was to contain territory from the Artsyz, Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Bolhrad, Sarata, Tarutyne, Tatarbunary, Reni, Kiliya, and Izmail raions.
Inal Ardzinba is the son of Batu Ardzinba, who fought in Abkhazia against Georgia.