Likewise Russia has begun asserting economic and military ambitions in its region. There has been the Georgia skirmish with the US in August 2008. On 26 May 2009 the Civil Georgia reported that protesters of United States puppet President Saakashvili filled the 55,000 seat Tbilisi's national stadium. Also, Russia has offered Azerbaijan assistance in building a nuclear plant.
Russia has agreed to pay Ukraine to run military drills over the Crimean Peninsula. Of particular interest though is that while theAmerican government says this ‘could prove provocative and destabilizing' on 15 May 2009 Vladimir Putin met with Sergey Bagapsh, leader of the Georgian breakaway region Abkhazia, and agreed to sign an agreement for Russian military bases in Abkhazia where Russian troops will be stationed for at least 49 years.