Family of detained Georgian doctor holds protest rally near occupation line

Tamila Laparashvili, the wife of Georgian doctor Vazha Gaprindashvili illegally detained in Tskhinvali said today's demonstration was peaceful and aimed to her husband's immediate release. Photo: IPN, 15 Dec 2019 - 16:21, Tbilisi,Georgia

Family and friends of Georgian doctor Vazha Gaprindashvili are holding a peaceful demonstration near the occupation line a month after he was sent to two-month pretrial detention “for deliberately crossing the border” of the occupied Tskhinvali region.

The demonstrators gathered near the Republic Square in central Tbilisi and went to the village of Odzisi close to the occupation line. 

Gaprindashvili’s wife, Tamila Lapanashvili thanked the demonstrators for joining the family and asked everyone to make cautious remarks, until the Georgian doctor would be released from Tskhinvali custody and return home. 

I would like to ask Ossetian people who have been residing together with us… I want to believe that those misunderstandings and problems that we had will be resolved through tolerance”, Lapanashvili stated.

She further underscored that her husband first of all serves to the health and protection of people, therefore, it is unimaginable that he is detained in his homeland because of his "human mission".

Stressing that their rally is “human, nonpolitical and nonviolent”, Tamila Lapanashvili said, this is an appeal to Ossetian doctors to let Vazha Gaprindashvili fulfil his duties as well. 

Gaprindashvili's family held a press conference a week ago, urging the Georgian government to take more active steps for the “immediate release” of the doctor .

As the so-called district court in Georgia’s Russian-occupied Akhalgori district left Vazha Gaprindashvili in pretrial detention, his family moved to "a radical form of protest".