Russia-Georgia war heroes “examples” of resolve - Defence Minister

  • Georgian Defence Minister Juansher Burchuladze on Friday paid homage to heroes of the Shindisi Battle. Photo: Government press office, 11 Aug 2023 - 16:30, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Defence Minister Juansher Burchuladze on Friday paid homage to the 17 Georgian servicemembers who lost their lives during a battle in central Georgia’s Shindisi village during the 2008 war between Russia and Georgia by saying they had provided an “example that our heroes cannot be broken”. 

In his press comments on the anniversary of the battle, the official stressed heroes from the country’s history “shape the future of Georgia”, before detailing the acts of bravery by the group in the battle where they faced overwhelming numbers of an invading Russian force. 

He said the platoon-sized unit had confronted a company-sized detachment of the invading armed force, with the latter being equipped with five tanks, armoured vehicles and large-calibre weapons, and left behind an example of “heroism and dedication” to the homeland. 

In the engagement, a 21-member detachment of Georgian soldiers came face-to-face with Russian troops on the fourth day of the armed conflict. 

Greatly outnumbered, they were ordered to surrender by the Russian troops but issued a strong refusal and inflicted significant losses on the enemy in an uneven, 45-minute subsequent battle that left 17 of the 21 Georgian servicemembers killed.

In comments on the ongoing occupation of two Georgian regions by Russia since the conflict, Burchuladze said he believed the “peaceful policy” of the Georgian Dream ruling party would lead to reintegration of the occupied regions.