Georgian Foreign Ministry reported on November 16 that it is “using all of its diplomatic tools” aimed at suspending illegal processes on occupied territories and improving human rights situation on the ground.
The Ministry released a statement following the decision of Russia-backed Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia authorities to sentence Georgian doctor Vazha Gaprindashvili to two-month pretrial custody for “illegally crossing the border.”
“We have mobilized the international community and [we] spare no efforts to ensure that our citizen, Vazha Gaprindashvili, returns to his family in a timely and safe manner,” the statement reads.
Expressing its concern for the “frequent provocations of occupying regime,” the ministry said such actions affect existing “grave security and humanitarian” situation on the ground, and points at “alarming human rights situation” tin the occupied region.
According to the ministry, it informed the European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM) and activated the Hotline, further noting that the Deputy FM Lasha Darsalia “maintains constant contact” with the co-chairs of Geneva International Discussions, as well as the the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
Parliament Speaker Archil Talakvadze also wrote on Facebook that the doctor “should be released from the occupying regime’s illegal detention as soon as possible.” “We will spare no efforts for that,” he said. Speaker Talakvadze slammed detention of the doctor who “helps people in need” as “an inexplicable evil.”
The United States Embassy also released a statement on November 16 calling for “the immediate release” of Vazha Gaprindashvili, “a well-known Georgian physician and president of the Association of Orthopedists and Traumatologists of Georgia”. Additionally, the U.S. Embassy called for “the immediate end to closures of the crossing points along the administrative boundary line.”
Reiterating its “full support” for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia, it then urged Russia to withdraw its forces to pre-conflict positions and provide “free access for humanitarian assistance to these regions, as well to reverse its recognition of the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states.”