Georgians form human chain to protest Russian occupation

Georgian citizens form a human chain in protest of Russia's illegal actions on Georgia's territory. Photo by IPN., 08 Aug 2017 - 14:19, Tbilisi,Georgia

A large group of Georgian citizens have formed a human chain to protest the Russian occupation of Georgian territories.

People gathered along Georgia’s central highway near the villages of Karapila and Khurvaleti in the Shida Kartli region. This is the area where the Russian occupation line is closest to Georgia’s central highway.

We have gathered here in protest of Russian occupation of Georgia. We are standing on Georgia’s central highway and Russians have erected barbed-wire fences in about 400 meters from this place”, one of the participants of the demonstration said.

Today’s demonstration was devoted to the ninth anniversary of the Russian invasion of Georgia on August 8 of 2008. Since then, two Georgian regions, Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region (South Ossetia), remain occupied by Russia and Tbilisi has no control over these areas. Fundamental human rights, such as right to free movement and receiving education in one's native language, are violated in both regions on a daily basis.

The Russia-Georgia war killed 228 Georgian civilians, 170 soldiers and 14 police officers.

The war displaced 192,000 people in Georgia. Many were able to return to their homes after the war but several years since then and more than 20,000 people remain displaced.