Several dozen anti-occupation activists gathered near village Zhinvali of Dusheti Municipality late-night yesterday, and threatened to block passage to cars with Russian license plates running through the Georgian Military Road.
The rally was called shortly after the detention of Tamaz Iluridze, a resident of village Plavismani in Gori Municipality adjacent to Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, apparently by the Russian FSB officers deployed in the region.
Iluridze, who was reportedly herding cows near the village, was “kidnapped” by “armed Russian occupants” around 300-meters deep into the Tbilisi-controlled territory, according to Davit Katsarava, the organizer of the rally.
“What the Russian occupants are doing is a terror on our territory, they are terrorizing and threatening our population … and with that are trying to highlight our powerlessness,” Davit Katsarava told reporters before the rally.
Katsarava’s appeal to police officers to allow them to hinder passage to cars with Russian registration only, was declined by the police officers. Later, the protesters tried to block the road, but the attempt ended unsuccessfully.
The rally was over by 3:00 am, with Katsarava saying the preliminary result “was achieved.” “We have hindered the Russian cars … the Russian side itself decided not allow its cars [from Zemo Larsi border crossing point].”
Katsarava also announced that the rally would be reconvened first in Tbilisi and then in Zhinvali to “continue creating discomfort” to the Russians, unless Tamaz Iluridze was released by 2:00 pm today.