(Civil.Ge) — Population of Abkhazia stands at 242,826, according to preliminary figures of a February census released by the breakaway region’s statistics office on March 28.
According to the previous census, held in Abkhazia in 2003, about 214,000 people lived in the breakaway region.
The figures, however, have always been a source of controversy with various estimates ranging from 180,000 to 220,000.
Based on number of voters registered in Abkhazia for 2005 elections, the Brussels-based think-tank International Crisis Group suggested that population in Abkhazia was between 157,000 and 190,000.
The breakaway region’s statistics office said that final results of 2011 census, including ethnic breakdown of the population would be available by the end of this year, according to the Abkhaz news agency Apsnipress.
The preliminary results provide breakdown of population by the region’s districts and towns with capital Sokhumi representing the largest one with 64,478 people (plus 12,000 people living in rural areas, which are part of the entire Sokhumi district).
30,437 people reside in pre-dominantly ethnic Georgian populated district of Gali, according to the released figures.
Breakdown of population by other districts is as follows: Gagra district – 39,342; Gudauta district – 37,143; Ochamchire district – 25,235; Gulripshi district – 18,146 and Tkvarcheli district – 16,000.