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One Georgian soldier shot dead and another injured in Afghanistan

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Thursday, September 24
One Georgian soldier was shot dead and another injured while patrolling in Afghanistan on September 22, Minister of Defence Tinatin Khidasheli has stated.

A private soldier from the 43th battalion of the Georgian Armed Forces, 21 year-old Vasil Kuljanishvili, has been killed while Sergeant Paata Rostobaia was heavily injured.

The wounded soldier will shortly be transported to Germany to undergo medical treatment there, Georgia’s Defence Minister Tinatin Khidasheli informed.

The Minister stressed that she spent the whole night with the killed soldier’s family members and was surprised by the heroic conduct of the late soldier’s mother.

Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili offered condolences to the soldier’s family and the whole of Georgia, stressing that all the funeral and other expenses would be covered by the Government.

He tasked the Ministry of Finance to provide 100,000 GEL in financial support to the Kuljanishvili family as envisaged through the Georgian legislation.

President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili stressed that each killed soldier was the “heaviest loss” for the country and offered deep condolences to the soldier’s family.

In NATO’s new, Resolute Support, mission in Afghanistan there are about 885 Georgian soldiers, making the country the second largest troop contributor.

In NATO’s previous ISAF mission in Afghanistan, Georgia was the largest non-NATO troop contribute with about 1,600 soldiers deployed.

The latest death brings the total number of Georgia’s Afghanistan death toll to 31.

Georgian analysts frequently mention that despite Georgia’s commitment to maintaining international peace, the NATO door still remains closed for Georgia.