Georgia’s State Security Service (SSG) has launched an investigation into Malkhaz Machalikashvili, the father of Temirlan Machalikashvili, a 19-year-old boy killed by security forces in Pankisi in December, after he said he ‘and several hundred others’ had planned to blow themselves up at the SSG offices but changed their minds. Machalikashvili later explained his speech was merely an emotional speech, insisting he would do no harm to Georgian people.
Six people are dead and four more injured, after an attack on a church in the Daghestani city of Kizlyar. Five parishioners and the attacker were killed, while the injured included two police officers, who remain in hospital. The attacker was reportedly a member of the Islamic State. [Read more…]
Shamil Nurmagomedov, the brother of suspected IS militant Marat Nurmagomedov, has been sentenced to seven years in prison for providing material help to a terrorist organisation. A court ordered that their father, Kazim Nurmagomedov, be detained for two months.
On 22 November, in a special operation in Tbilisi, Georgian special services liquidated an armed group which included Akhmed Chatayev, also known as ‘one-handed Akhmed’. Chatayev was considered one of the leaders of the Islamic State. During the battle with Georgian special services he refused to disarm, and committed suicide by detonating a grenade. This is, perhaps, everything that is known from official sources about the operation in the Georgian capital, which lasted for almost a day.
Georgian authorities and Grozny Mayor Muslim Khuchiyev have denied holding secret security talks in Georgia. Khuchiyev was recorded by journalists from Rustavi 2 at a hotel in Batumi, fuelling speculation his visit was related to recent counterterror operations in Georgia.
As the number of arrests in the wake of November’s deadly counterterror siege grows, the killing by security forces of a 19-year-old in Pankisi has caused controversy. [Read more…]
Ilyas Sharipov, the leader of the ‘Balakhani’ militant group, has been killed during a counter-terrorist operation in Daghestan’s Gumbet District. The 38-year-old man was the brother one of the women who blew themselves up in the Moscow Metro in 2010.
Akhmed Chatayev, the Islamic State leader killed during the 21–22 November anti-terrorist operation in Tbilisi, did not enter Georgia through a border checkpoint, the head of the Georgian State Security Service (SSG) Vakhtang Gomelauri announced on 5 December. Gomelauri also told journalists that members of his group acquired their weapons from a hiding place located in a forest.
Akhmed Chatayev, a member of the Islamic State (IS) suspected of organising the deadly 2016 Istanbul Airport attack, blew up himself during the counterterrorist operation in Tbilisi’s Gabriel Salosi Street on 21–22 November, the State Security Service (SSG) has confirmed. [Read more…]
The Georgian authorities’ decision to remain silent on the events surrounding last week’s 21-hour counterterror siege in Tbilisi has fuelled frenzy in much of the country’s media. This has demonstrated a damaging ineptitude in the state’s handling of strategic communications during a crisis, and highlighted major flaws in the media’s ability to handle such topics sensitively and sensibly.