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UNICEF says Father Who Keeps 8 Children Indoors Violates Their Rights

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, January 31
(TBILISI)--The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) says that the father, who keeps eight children at home in Georgia’s mountainous Svaneti region, roughly violates fundamental rights of his family members.

Head of the Communication Programs of UNICEF Georgia Maia Kurtsikidze told the local media Netgazeti that getting education and the possibility to integrate into society are fundamental human rights.

“While studying the issue more violations may be revealed. At the first glance the eight children’s rights are violated, they are the victims of violence. It is important the children to see their rights restored shortly. Relevant bodies must take measures to ensure the restoration of the rights,” Kurtsikidze said.

Georgia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs stated that they have launched investigation of the case.

However, the deputy interior minister said that the case “was sensitive” and only “forcible” settling of the issue could harm the children.

Local civil servants and the school leadership claim that they have been trying to persuade Amiran Devnozashvili to let his kids out as the eldest girl is already 21-year-old.

However, they could do nothing as the children “were very much dependent on their father.”

The Georgian NGOs criticized the Interior Ministry for its statements and addressed the relevant bodies to ensure the protection of the children’s rights.

Georgia’s Public Defender Nino Lomjaria has already shown interest to the issue and said that she could see the signs of violation of human rights.

Georgia’s private broadcaster Rustavi 2 interviewed Amiran Devnozashvili, who says that he is trying to protect his family from negative influences of the outside world.

The man claims he is capable of educating his children better than any educational institutions.

He admitted he had problems with the local police for his behavior but the police could not stop him.