Release of two Georgian citizens illegally detained by the occupying forces

Zaza Megrelishvili and Tamaz Gogichashvili, two Georgian citizens illegally detained near the Russian-occupied village of Lopani in central Georgia on December 15, 2021, were released on Friday, the State Security Service of Georgia said. Georgia.

The hotline mechanism and other tools available to the central government have been actively used in the process of releasing illegally detained persons from illegal imprisonment.

The issue of the release of the mentioned persons from unlawful detention was regularly discussed within the framework of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM), and information was constantly provided to the co-chairs of the international discussions in Geneva and to international partners.

The central government continues to work actively for the release of other illegally detained Georgian citizens, both in the Russian-occupied Tskhinvali region (South Ossetia) and in Abkhazia.

Illegal detention of Georgian citizens by Russian-controlled occupation forces for “illegal border crossing” has become a practice along the administrative border since the 2008 Russo-Georgian war and subsequent occupation of Tskhinvali regions and Abkhazia.

Michael A. Bynum