President travels to landslide-hit area at Dariali Gorge

Heavy rain was believed to be the cause of the landslide., 21 Aug 2014 - 15:30, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia’s President is in Dariali Gorge to offer his support following a landslide late last night in Devdoraki Gorge, near Kazbegi and the Russian border.

Two people are missing after the disaster, which damaged a gas pipeline running from Russia to Armenia via Georgia. Heavy rain was believed to be the cause of the landslide.

Yesterday’s landslide occurred near the same fatal landslide which struck Dariali Gorge on May 17, a few kilometers south from the Kazbegi-Zemo Larsi border-crossing point with Russia. That disaster claimed the lives of five people.

President Giorgi Margvelashvili said the August 20 landslide was the extension of the same problem which hit the region in May.

"It is essential work to clear the area takes place as soon as possible, particularly the main route that has strategic importance for Georgia,” Margvelashvili said.

Meanwhile fresh mudslides have blocked the Georgian Military Road that flows along the Tergi River, a major route through the Caucasus from Georgia to Russia. Devdoraki Gorge. Photo by Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure

Margvelashvili believed at least two weeks was needed for the affected roads to be fixed.

Last night’s mudslide caused major damage to the North-South gas pipeline that transported natural gas from Russia to Armenia thorough Georgia. As a result, gas has been temporarily disabled from travelling along this route.

Margvelashvili believed the gas pipeline would be fixed as soon as possible as it "served Georgia as well as our Armenian friends”. Georgia's President at Devdoraki Gorge. Photo by President's Press Office.

"Georgia’s Prime Minister is on his official visit in Armenia and they have to know that our Armenian friends will not have any problems relating with pipeline,” the President said.

The same gas pipeline was damaged in the May 17 landslide. At that time the gas supply was temporarily stopped but the pipeline was restored in less than a week.

Meanwhile, last night’s disaster caused the main road leading to the Kazbegi-Larsi Custom Service point with Russia to flood.

The Finance Ministry’s press office released some photos of the damaged infrastructure at the border crossing point. See these images below:


It is believed two people – a Georgian citizen and a Turkish citizen who are both employed at the Dariali Hydro Power Plant (HPP) - remained missing. They are believed to be trapped in the power plant’s tunnel.

Rescuers are at the scene trying to find the men. Trolleys are also under the rubble.