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Russian border guards physically abuse Georgians

By Mariam Chanishvili
Thursday, July 28
The State Security Service (SSS) of Georgia shed light on a physical assault of a Georgian man by occupying border guards in the Kirbali village, near the Administrative Boundary Line (ABL) separating the de facto Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) region from the rest of Georgia. The SSS issued a statement in which the incident is assessed as a provocation by the occupying forces.

“We strongly condemn the incidents, which serve as another provocative action from the occupation forces and threatens peace and stability on the ground,” the statement of the SSS reads.

The Georgian citizen identified as Zakaria Takadze, aged 50 was herding his cattle near the village cemetery when he was approached by armed border guards on July 26. He was beaten by the guards while they were trying to detain him on the administrative boundary line with breakaway South Ossetia.

The Deputy State Minister for the Reconciliation and Civil Equality of Georgia, Khetevan Tsikhelashvili, noted that they have already informed Georgia's international partners, including the European Union Monitoring Mission, and it will be one of the main subjects to be discussed during the next meeting of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) in the Ergneti format.

“Unfortunately, a Georgian citizen was attacked by border guards. Government representatives visited this person in hospital in Gori. His state of health is stable. In any case, it is beyond contestation that this happened on Georgian territory,” said Tsikhelashvili.

According to the Georgian State Security Service, a total of 163 people were detained by Russian border guard troops at the breakaway South Ossetia’s administrative boundary in 2015. Tsikhelashvili underlined that the Georgian government does its best in order to react to such incidents properly.