Ukraine conflict: Georgian fighter’s body to return home this week

  • Giorgi Janelidze died in eastern Ukraine yesterday after being killed in an armed attack., 20 Apr 2015 - 12:45, Tbilisi,Georgia

The body of a Georgian fighter who was killed in Ukraine by Russian-backed separatists is expected to be returned to Georgia in the next few days.

Today Georgia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Davit Jalaghania said the Georgian Embassy and Consulate in Kiev were actively cooperating with their Ukrainian colleagues to ensure the body of Giorgi Janelidze was returned home at the beginning of this week.

Janelidze died in eastern Ukraine yesterday after being killed in an armed attack near Shirokino, by shelling from Russian-backed separatists. The Georgian citizen was fighting for the Azov Battalion, an all-volunteer paramilitary militia affiliated with the Ukrainian government, reported Georgian media.

Deputy Minister Jalaghania said he was extremely saddened to hear of Janelidze’s death.

"A really sad thing happened. A Georgian fighter died in Ukraine in an anti-terrorist operation.”

"Currently formal procedures are being carried out [but] most importantly, the [body of the] Georgian fighter has been brought out from the active conflict zone.”

Jalaghania said according to the information given to them, Janelidze’s body was currently in Dnepropetrovsk and was due to be transferred to Kiev today or tomorrow. There, his heroism will be given appropriate honors, Jalaghania said.

Meanwhile Janelidze was wounded two days before he will killed. He and another Georgian fighter, Davit Suleimanashvili, were injured on Friday.

Georgia’s Foreign Ministry stated the second man, Suleimanashvili, was alive and in a stable condition. He remained in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.

This was the seventh reported death of a Georgian citizen resulting from unrest in Ukraine, although an official number has not been released by authorities.