The Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) said on December 27 that it had nothing to do with a series of assassinations of Abkhaz police officials that were carried out in the past few days in the breakaway region’s Gali district.
Alik Khishba, chief of the Abkhaz police in the village of Otobaia in the Gali district, was murdered on December 26.
Abkhaz warlord Otar Turnanba, a deputy chief of the Abkhaz police in the Gali district, died reportedly after his car hit a land-mine blast near the village of Chuburkhinji in the Gali district on December 25.
The Abkhaz authorities blamed the Georgian special services for being behind these “terrorist acts.” Abkhaz leader Sergey Bagapsh alleged that Vano Merabishvili was visiting Zugdidi, a Georgian town at the Abkhaz administrative border, before the attacks took place.
The Georgian Interior Ministry said that reports about Merabishvili's visit to Zugdidi and inciting Georgian guerrilla groups to boost operations in the Gali district are “utterly false.”