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Two Detained with Tatunashvili Allowed to Leave Occupied Region

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, March 13
(AKHALGORI, Georgia) - Two Georgian citizens, Levan Kutashvili and Ioseb Pavliashvili, who were illegally detained with Archil Tatunashvili in the occupied Tskhinvali region on February 22, have been allowed by the de facto leadership to leave the region.

The individuals have already been transported to the Tbilisi-administered territory, while the body of Tatunashvili, a 35-year-old Georgian soldier who died in unclear circumstances in Tskhinvali on February 23, has not been handed over to his family.

The Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs of Georgia Kakhaber Sabanadze told the media that Kutashvili and Pavliashvili have no signs of physical abuse.

The official stated that the Georgian law enforcers have launched investigation over the death of Tatunashvili and the detention of the two.

“Investigation has been launched for premeditated murder and illegal deprivation of liberty,” Sabanadze said.

Kutashvili and Pavliashvili were released from the Tskhinvali detention facility shortly after Tatunashvili’s death, as the case has caused a large-scale stir in Georgia and abroad, with almost all international organizations and many foreign states condemning the death, demanding the release of the detainees and the transferring of Tatunashvili’s body.

Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili has already urged the leadership of Russia to take joint steps and resolve the "complicated situation”.

The PM’s statement has been grilled by the opposition and evaluated as “another concession” to Russia.

The Patriarchate of Georgia has announced that on the request of the Georgian Patriarch Ilia II, Russian Patriarch Kirill has become involved in the body-transfer process.

Despite all the efforts, Tskhinvalisays “they need time for comprehensive autopsy.”

In its previous statement the de facto security service of the occupied region claimed Tatunashvili died from heart failure.

The Tskhinvali media reported that Tatunashvili was detained for his participation in the Russia-Georgia 2008 war. However, that time, Tatunahsvili served in Iraqi peace mission.