About Civil.ge
Eng | Geo | Rus
Last updated: 16:58 - 16 Feb.'18
RSS
Mobile
Twitter
Facebook
Three Pankisi Gorge Residents Questioned
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 17 Jan.'18 / 18:56

Three young residents of Pankisi gorge were questioned on January 16 due to their alleged ties with members of the group of Ahmed Chatayev who fought against the Georgian security forces on November 21-22 in Tbilisi, the Georgian State Security Service (SSS) confirmed to Civil.ge on January 17.

According to their family members, the reason for the questioning is the acquaintance of the three young men with the suspects and photos where they are seen together.

Father of one of the questioned individuals and a member of the Pankisi Council of Elders, Jaraph Khangoshvili maintains that his son’s acquaintance with the terrorism suspects “does not prove anything,” except the fact that Pankisi gorge residents are “hospitable people.” The son, Yusuph Khangoshvili, is seen together with the suspects and Temirlan Machalikashvili in a video made in a shop in Tbilisi on 11 November.

However, the SSS blurred the face of Yusuph Khangoshvili when on January 4 it released this video footage to prove the suspects’ ties with Temirlan Machalikashvili, who had been critically wounded during the security forces operation in Pankisi on December 26.

The other two individuals questioned by the SSS on January 16 are Jibrail Kushanashvili and the son of Ramaz (Khizir) Margoshvili - one of the individuals detained by security forces on December 26. The mother of the former, Hedi Kushanashvili told journalists that her son is seen in a photo together with a terrorism suspect as a result of only a single one-day meeting.

Georgian Public Defender Nino Lomjaria visited Pankisi on January 16 and met with family members of Temirlan Machalikashvili and the four individuals detained on December 26. Lomjaria expressed readiness to mediate between the authorities and Pankisi gorge residents.

Alleged prior visits of Chatayev’s group members to Georgia

Some residents of Pankisi gorge say that Chatayev’s group members had visited Georgia long before the November 21-22 operation and that at the time ties with them were not considered to be connection to terrorists.

One of them, Meqa Khangoshvili told journalists that Chatayev’s group members "had been entering Georgia for two years, not illegally but legally.” Khangoshvili says they visited Pankisi gorge many times, “freely moved in any part of Georgia,” and could not be identified as terrorists by the locals.

According to Malkhaz Machalikashvili, Temirlan Machalikashvili’s father, the suspects “came up to the [Pankisi] gorge and freely moved in Tbilisi.” Machalikashvili also says the suspects frequented Georgia during the last two years, adding that “at least a half if not the whole gorge knew they came from Russia for business purposes or as tourists. Everyone knew them.”

RELATED
Latest News
16 Feb.'18 16:58
Government Unveils New Tax Initiative for Small Businesses
According to the initiative, tax rates for small businesses will decrease fivefold.
16 Feb.'18 15:06
Georgian Economy Minister Visits Azerbaijan
Kumsishvili attended the Fourth Ministerial Meeting of Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council. 
15 Feb.'18 17:39
Independent Agency to Investigate Crimes Committed by Law Enforcement Officers
The agency will be established in 2019, and will replace the Office of Personal Data Protection Inspector.
15 Feb.'18 11:53
Parliament Renews Discussions on Controversial Amendments to Broadcasting Law
New regulations expanding GPB’s powers triggered controversy within the ruling Georgian Dream party.
14 Feb.'18 15:57
U.S. Intelligence on Georgia’s Foreign Threats, Domestic Politics
Office of the Director of National Intelligence published its Worldwide Threat Assessment report for 2018.
14 Feb.'18 14:34
Minister Reports on Defense Reforms to Parliament
Training programs, total defense concept and budgetary priorities among the issues listed by Levan Izoria.
14 Feb.'18 11:36
The Weekly Tripwire - Issue 26
Civil.ge’s news digest covering developments in Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia.
14 Feb.'18 10:56
Appellate Court Upholds Church Murder Plot Verdict
Archpriest Giorgi Mamaladze was sentenced to nine years in prison by the Tbilisi City Court.
13 Feb.'18 17:14
Georgian FM Visits Kuwait for Ministerial Meeting against Terrorism
Mikheil Janelidze met with Kuwaiti Prime Minister Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah.
13 Feb.'18 11:28
Georgia’s Foreign Trade in January 2018
Trade deficit figure stands at USD 0.37 billion.

About Civil Georgia
Civil.Ge © 2001-2018, Daily News Online
Registered office: 2 Dolidze Str, 4-th Floor.
88