The Russian occupying forces carried out “borderization and other types of unlawful activities” along the Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia dividing line near Gori Municipality villages of Jariasheni and Mejvriskhevi, the State Security Service of Georgia (SSG) reported on January 28.
Eastern and northern parts of Mejvriskhevi as well as western and northern parts of Jariasheni lie next to the dividing line. Both villages are located some dozen kilometers away from Georgia’s major east-west highway.
The SSG said it has informed the European Union Monitoring Mission, Co-Chairs of the Geneva International Discussions, international partners and activated the EUMM-administered hotline over “every instance of provocative activities.”
The statement comes after Georgian TV stations aired footage on January 27 showing three persons, supposedly Russian troops, being present in the vicinity of the Mejvriskhevi village. Journalists on the ground reported that nearby trees and bushes had been marked with white ribbons by the men.
Locals suspected that the occupying forces are attempting to move the occupation line to territory currently controlled by Tbilisi, and that ribbons mark the locations where they are to erect barbed wire fences.
Goderdzi Bibilashvili, a local, told journalists that in this case, his and three other families’ houses would fall on the other side of the fence. Another local, Vasil Zangurashvili voiced suspicions that part of a cemetery and St. Mary Church of Didi Mejvriskhevi would also end up behind the fence.
The suspicions were denied by the State Security Service, which stated that “information disseminated about the houses of the locals ending up behind the occupation line is not true.”
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