Illegally detained doctor charged in occupied Tskhinvali, 3 others released

Famous Georgian doctor and traumatologist Vazha Gaprindashvili has been in illegal detention starting Saturday. Photo:Firefly World., 14 Nov 2019 - 17:44, Tbilisi,Georgia

Famous Georgian doctor and traumatologist Vazha Gaprindashvili, who was illegally detained by Russian-controlled occupation forces on Saturday, has been charged with “deliberately crossing the border” by de facto Tskhinvali, while three other Georgian citizens illegally detained between November 9 and 11 have been released.

The Georgian State Security Service has reported that Gaprindashvili was detained illegally near the village of Orchosani [currently under Russian control].

The Georgian media outlets report that Gaprindashvili was visiting a patient when he was abducted.

The hot-line has been activated by the European Union Monitoring mission and negotiations are in progress regarding the release of the doctor.

We are doing our utmost for the release of Vazha Gaprindashvili,” the Georgian State Security Service says.

Three other illegally detained individuals, Ramaz Zadishvili, David Mishelashvili and Zurab Tukhashvili. have been released earlier today after paying fine “for illegally crossing the border.”

The de facto Tskhinvali government closed crossing points with the rest of Georgia starting September 4, 2019, causing severe humanitarian situation on the ground, with two individuals already dead due to delayed medical aid.

The illegal detention of Georgian citizens by Russian occupation forces near the occupation line is a common issue. Detainees are usually released after their families pay a fine.

The standard fine is 2,000 Russian rubles (about €28 / $31 USD).

Russia recognised the Georgian regions of Tskhinvali and Abkhazia as independent states in the wake of the Russia-Georgia 2008 war.