Investigation into the death of PM Zurab Zhvania in 2005 has been “resumed” and is “moving forward at fast pace”, Justice Minister Tea Tsulukiani said on November 27.
Tsulukiani declined to give details citing ongoing investigation.
“The only thing that I can tell you is that this case is among top priorities, because the country deserves to know in what conditions its Prime Minister died,” Tsulukiani said at a news conference.
“Of course we will spare no resources in order to establish the truth about this case,” she said.
“In the condition of renewed investigation, which has started moving forward at fast pace few days ago, the family will take its part,” the Justice Minister said, adding that late PM’s family had the right to know how the authorities were handling this case and for that reason late PM’s brother Giorgi Zhvania was receiving information about the ongoing investigation.
Citing “multiple inconsistencies” in the official version of causes of death and circumstances surrounding the case, Giorgi Zhvania, who is now a lawmaker from the Georgian Dream coalition, has long been arguing that his brother was killed. In late October he claimed that President Saakashvili, as well as Zurab Adeishvili, who at the time of Zhvania’s death was chief prosecutor; Vano Merabishvili, then interior minister and Giorgi Baramidze, then state minister for Euro-Atlantic integration, were involved in “covering up the truth” about his brother’s death.
According to the official preliminary conclusions (officially the case has not been closed), made shortly after PM Zhvania’s death, he died of carbon monoxide poisoning caused by a faulty gas heater. According to this version the heater was improperly installed in the apartment where Zhvania’s body was reportedly found in early hours of February 3, 2005 in the Saburtalo district of Tbilisi. Along with Zhvania, Deputy Governor of Kvemo Kartli region Raul Usupov was also found dead in the same apartment, allegedly also killed by carbon monoxide poisoning.