IDP Evictions and Protests
By Salome Modebadze
Tuesday, August 1741 IDP families from Samachablo were evicted from Machabeli Street No.8 on August 16. 50 police officers surrounded the perimeter of the building and blocked anyone trying to enter. Refusing to comment to the media, members of the European Union delegation simply observed the eviction process. “The eight displaced families from Samachablo had been living here since the August War in 2008,” said Kakha Terashvili, IDP from Tskhinvali stressing he was nor aware where the families would now be settled.
The IDPs received a warning to vacate their apartments the previous week, but they have nowhere to go. According to preliminary information, the IDPs will be settled in Potskho village in Tsalenjikha region but so far no-one from the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees of Georgia has visited the IDPs.
IDPs who have already been settled at Daba Potskhoetseri in Tsalenjikha region have unsatisfactory living conditions, according to the information released by the representative of the New Rights, Davit Belkania who is a member of the Tsalenjikha City Council and the Head of the regional organisation. “The block of flats in Potskhoetsero where the IDPs had been settled is still out of order so the families have neither electricity nor gas as they had been promised. What’s more the people have no prospects for employment as there aren't even jobs for the local citizens themselves,” Belkania told Interpressnews. Stressing IDPs are protesting over the Government’s carelessness, the New Rights representative encouraged the relevant ministry to ensure the people have satisfactory living conditions.
Meanwhile IDPs at Lermontov Street No.10 also face the threat of eviction, Nino Kardava from Abkhazia told Interpressnews. “I have been staying at this place with my husband and three small children for four months already and there are around ten other families, two of which are from Abkhazia and the rest from Tskhinvali. We received an eviction warning from the Ministry a week ago and representatives from the Ministry just visited us stressing they would evict us in a day,” Kardava said worrying that it will be difficult for her to watch over her children alone in Bakurtsikhe village in Kakheti when her husband is working in Tbilisi.
The protest rally of the IDPs evicted from the so-called Isani Military Hospital on August 13 ended in front of the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees. Entering one by one into the office, the IDPs met Goga Tugushi, Head of the Social Services Department of the Ministry. “Tugushi told me that the special commission will decide the issue of providing us with suitable apartments, but until then I will continue to stay with at my relatives,” IDP Adeli Todadze told the media after returning from Tugushi’s office.
After two days trying to listen to the concerns of the members of the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees, The Messenger was unable to obtain any answers to its questions, not even from the Ministry's Press Service.