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Okruashvili on ties between Tbilisi and North Caucasus militants

By Mzia Kupunia
Tuesday, May 31
Georgian special agencies have been “actively keeping contact” with the North Caucasus military groups of warriors (boyeviks), Georgian ex-defence Minister in exile, Irakli Okruashvili told Russian journalists, reports. According to the website, Okruashvili is featured in a documentary - Caucasus 2: Metastases, prepared by the journalists of Russia’s 1st Channel.

According to the authors of the documentary, Georgia is “one of the most significant” suppliers of money and arms to the North Caucasus militants. “Judging from the negotiations of the head of the terrorists, Doku Umarov and according to the archive from his personal computer found during the latest special operation, part of the aid comes from Georgia,” quotes the authors of the movie as saying. reports, that Irakli Okruashvili has also talked about the alleged cooperation of the Georgian special agencies with the “boyeviks.” Reportedly, Okruashvili has said in the interview, that one of the organizers of Moscow and Volgodonsk house bombings in 1999, Achimez Gochiayev was given a corridor by the Georgian authorities to pass the border. “I’ve witnessed that he was given a corridor not only once, but twice. The Interior Ministry was a decision maker on this issue. He was redirected through Dagestan and Turkey,” quotes Okruashvili as saying.

Officials in Tbilisi have said they do not see a need to comment on Okruashvili’s interview to Russia’s 1st Channel. “A person who is tightly cooperating with Russia’s state channels and is trying to give them information needed for [Russian] special agencies, already speaks for itself,” Chairman of the Defence and Security Committee at the Georgian Parliament, MP Givi Targamadze said.

Okruashvili, who was sentenced to 11 years in prison in absentia, was planning to arrive in Georgia and hold a “Day of Rage” on May 25, however, later he dropped his plans, saying that the reason for his decision was a failure of his Georgian Party to reach an agreement with Nino Burjanadze’s People’s Assembly.

Russia’s 1st Channell broadcasted the documentary late at night on Monday.