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Georgia Files New Complaint against Russia with ECtHR

By Tea Mariamidze
Thursday, August 23
Georgia’s Ministry of Justice has filed a new complaint against Russia with the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) - Georgia vs. the Russian Federation, which refers to the administrative practice of mass detention, harassment and murder of the Georgian population on the occupied territories of Georgia and along the occupation line with Georgia’s two, Russian-backed breakaway regions – Abkhazia and South Ossetia (Tskhinvali).

The ministry explains the security measures and detentions of Georgians have been strengthened after the 2008 war and reached a critical level in February, when the citizen of Georgia, Archil Tatunashvili was killed in occupied South Ossetia.

“Georgia demands the European Court to establish Russia's responsibility for violating many articles of the European Convention,” the statement of the ministry reads.

The complaint reads that in particular, Russia should be held responsible for continuous occupation, erection of barbed wire fences and targeted campaign against the population of Georgia.

“Russia violated the European Convention’s Article 2 (right to life), Article 3 (prohibition of torture), Article 5 (right to liberty and security), Article 8 (right to private and family life), Article 13 (right to effective remedy), Articles 1 (right to property) and 2 (right to education) of the Protocol 1, Article 2 of Protocol 4 (freedom of movement),” the ministry said.

Besides, the document reads that these violations have a discriminative motive and aim to further persecute and intimidate ethnic Georgians to prevent them from returning to occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali regions.

In the complaint, the special attention is paid to the murder of Georgian citizens: Archil Tatunashvili, Giga Otkhozoria, and Davit Basharuli.

Tatunashvili was tortured by the de facto law enforcers of breakaway Tskhinvali on February 22, 2018, after which he died. Davit Basharuli died in unclear circumstances in the occupied Akhalgori district in 2014, and Giga Otkhozoria was shot to death by the so-called border guards of occupied Abkhazia at the occupation line village Khurcha in May 2016.

The ECtHR will examine the complaint following the Rules of Procedure and the European Convention.