For the majority of Georgians, the conflicts in Abkhazia and South Ossetia are only about Russia. The only way out of this stalemate is to start paying attention to the Abkhazian and South Ossetian experience.
I T, the town of Znaur.
‘In 1988 I graduated from the Institute of Economics at the Faculty of Light Industry in Moscow. I returned and married into a family with a Georgian mother and Ossetian father. A slogan suggesting that Georgia was for Georgians and that Ossetians were aliens was being thrown around. These were popular phrases and slogans, which had already penetrated South Ossetia. There were Georgians in our districts, nationalists, and they would also gather.’
L Ch, 60, Ergneti village, Gori Municipality.
‘Those days, Tskhinvali was a city where the doors of houses were never locked, there was such intimacy and enormous trust. We played in the street and didn’t know the nationality of our friends: there were Ossetians, Russians, Jews, Armenians. I was raised in such an environment, where the people were not segregated by their nationality. Probably everyone knows who hid that ‘bomb’ in Tskhinvali, which was put into operation from the 1990s.’
A recently-removed memorial to victims of the Georgia–Abkhazia war in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock will be reinstalled ‘with revised wording’, Scottish and Georgian officials say. Abkhazian leaders have denounced the move. [Read more…]
A memorial to victims of the Georgia–Abkhazia war in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock has been removed at the request of Georgian authorities. Abkhazian leaders have expressed outrage at the removal. [Read more…]
South Ossetia plans to open a customs post in Akhalgori (Leningor), a Georgian-populated settlement in South Ossetia which borders Georgian-controlled territory. Georgian authorities have said the initiative has no future. [Read more…]
As much as 81% of the population of Georgia doesn’t know what the European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM) does, according to the 2017 Knowledge of and Attitudes towards the European Union in Georgia survey funded by the Europe Foundation and implemented by CRRC-Georgia. This lack of knowledge has increased over time, as has the prevalence of incorrect information about the EUMM’s mission. This represents a missed opportunity for the EU’s communications in Georgia.
E J, 62, the village of Dzau, teacher.
‘I was born and raised in Java [Dzau]; my father is a local man. During the Soviet Union he was the head of the police of the May First district in Tbilisi — the city’s largest district. He lived among Georgians and we would often host his friends, elderly people, and I could never imagine that something could happen between us — that they would never come to visit us or could betray or deceive us.’
The Supreme Court of South Ossetia has ruled that Jehovah’s Witnesses are an extremist organisation, effectively outlawing them.
A A, 80, the village of Chvrinisi, Kareli Municipality.
‘I was working in Znauri [a village west of Tskhinvali] when the unrest began; I didn’t like that mess. Georgians and Ossetians were muttering among themselves. I couldn’t do anything, my words were not considered significant, but sometimes I told them to stop or everything would end badly for both sides.’