Tbilisi security officials sat down today with Kremlin-backed authorities of Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia to discuss ensuring water supply to villages adjacent to the dividing line during the irrigation season, at a technical meeting under the Ergneti IPRM format.
The irrigation water supply was running low due to the heat, and to resolve the problem the sides outlined several measures that will be carried out in the following days, noted Irakli Antadze of the State Security of Georgia (SSG).
The SSG official said that a deal between Tbilisi and the Tskhinvali authorities on allowing irrigation streams to the villages in the vicinity of the occupation line was struck two years ago and still stands. Antadze presumedly referred to the Tiriponi Irrigation Canal, headstream of which is controlled by Tskhinvali, and supplies settlements on both sides of the dividing line.
Following the 2008 Russo-Georgian war, the Kremlin-backed authorities had closed the water source for the canal, leaving dozens of villages on both sides of the occupation line without irrigation supply for years.
According to information received by Civil.ge in November 2020 from an official source that wished to stay anonymous, Tbilisi is also undertaking repair works of the canal.
101th Ergneti IPRM meeting is slated for July 13, where Tbilisi officials will reiterate the call for the release of Zaza Gakheladze and Genadi Bestaev, Georgian citizens detained arbitrarily by the occupying forces. The issue was discussed at today’s technical meeting as well, as said by SSG’s Antadze.
The IPRMs format was established under the Geneva International Discussions to address the security concerns and developments on the ground on a regular basis, and involves officials from Tbilisi on the one hand and representatives of Tskhinvali and Sokhumi authorities on the other in two, separate meetings, as well as representatives of the Russian border troops.