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Russia to pay compensation

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Monday, May 30
Russia agreed to pay compensation worth €70,000 to a family of a victim of mass deportation of Georgians from Russia in 2006, which Georgia believes was a “mild form of ethnic cleansing”.

Information over Russia’s consent to pay the money has been aired by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), where the family of Manana Jabelia, a victim of the deportation, had submitted a complaint.

A lawyer of the applicant stated that Russia asked for a deal with the family, and the family accepted the offer.

Jabelia was working as a vendor when she was detained in November 2006 in Russia, amid a Georgia-Russia espionage controversy when the previous Government of Georgia arrested four Russian officers on charges of espionage in September 2006.

Jabelia was one of thousands of Georgians who became a target of Russia’s revenge following its officers’ arrest.

The woman was detained as she lacked valid documents for residency that time and was sent to a pre-trial detention facility.

The court ruled her guilty verdict and demanded her deportation to Georgia after paying a fine for violating Russia’s law.

However, Jabelia appeal the decision and won, her deportation order was annulled, but, regardless, she was sent back to her cell where she died of a heart attack.

The 2006 deportation of Georgians from Russia refers to the deaths, unlawful arrests, expulsions and overall mistreatment of several thousand ethnic Georgians by the Russian government.

The official Russian position was that the Georgians in question had violated Russian immigration law and that their expulsion and treatment in custody were just acts of standard law enforcement.

In 2014, the ECtHR ruled in Georgia's favour, concluding that Russia's actions in 2006 violated the European Convention on Human Rights.

In 2015, Georgia officially requested in excess of $70 million in damages for the victims. Russia has not paid the money and shows no sign of doing so.