EUMM saddened by death of woman due to closed ‘checkpoint’ with occupied Tskhinvali

The European Union Monitoring Mission said in its statement that the EUMM-managed Hotline was not activated in this case. Photo: Nino Alavidze/, 29 Oct 2019 - 22:25, Tbilisi,Georgia

The European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM) offers its “sincere condolences” for the “unfortunate death” of Margo Martiashvili, who suffered a stroke in the Russian-controlled Akhalgori district yesterday. 

The Mission is aware of the death of Ms. Margo Martiashvili from Akhalgori district. The EUMM-managed Hotline was not activated in this case. Our thoughts are with her family”, EUMM announced late today.

The Mission further noted that “such tragic instances show the potential impact of the severe restrictions in place on the freedom of movement for the local population in Akhalgori valley”. 

It said "the main crossing point to South Ossetia and the Akhalgori Valley", normally seeing around 400 crossings daily "has been totally closed" since September 5.

This is depriving local communities of prompt and adequate medical care. It is also affecting livelihoods in other negative ways”, EUMM said, adding that the Mission “is monitoring these developments closely”. 

To prevent further hardship, the Mission announced that “it is important that restrictions are lifted as soon as possible and for a humanitarian approach to prevail in handling individual cases”. 

The EUMM also underscored that it “has made its position clear” on these points at recent Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism meetings in Ergneti.

Martiashvili died in the hospital of occupied Tskhinvali as her relatives were unable to transport her to the Tbilisi-controlled territory via the shortest route due to the closure of the so-called border.