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Abkhazia refuses to detain Otkhozoria’s murderer

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, June 24
According to Abkhazia's de-facto military prosecutor Adgur Agrba, the military court denied the prosecution's motion on the detention of Rashid Kanji-Oghli, who was accused of the murder of a citizen of Georgia, 31 year old Giga Otkhozoria, on May 19.

The Military Prosecutor's Office of the de-facto Republic of Abkhazia addressed the military court of Abkhazia with the motion to detain

Rashid Kanji Oghli in the morning on June 23. However, Kanji-Oghli was sentenced by Abkhazia's de-facto military court to house arrest.

According to information released by the Apsnypress, the online news agency of Abkhazia, border guard Rashid Kanji-Oghli was fired from the so-called state security service. He is charged with premeditated murder.

“The investigative authority expects to receive prosecution evidence necessary for the case to the Court on the quadripartite commission - a joint mechanism to prevent and respond to incidents in the vicinity of the Abkhaz-Georgian border in the town of Gali, created in the framework of the Geneva Discussions on stability and security in Transcaucasia,” the article on the web-site of Apsnypress reads.

Georgia’s Interior Ministry approved of the steps made by the Military Prosecutor's Office of the De-facto Republic of Abkhazia. However, no comments have been made yet about the decision of Abkhazia's de-facto military court.

Giorgi Mghebrishvili, Georgia’s Interior Minister, stated earlier on June 23 that there are reports that it is planned to release Giga Otkhozoria’s murderer in order to use it against Georgia.

“The de facto prosecutor's office appealed to the de facto court to arrest Otkhozoria’s murderer. This is the right decision. However, there are reports that they plan to release Giga Otkhozoria’s murderer in order to use this situation against Georgia and escalate the frozen conflict,” commented Mghebrishvili.

Giga Otkhozoria was on Georgian-controlled territory when he was gunned down by border guards stationed near the Administrative Boundary Line with Abkhazia in the afternoon on May 19.

Otkhozoria was shot six times, including once in the head. He was rushed to hospital but died soon after. He was survived by his wife and two children.

The issue of Otkhozoria’s murder was raised by the Georgian side at the recent Geneva International Talks and at the Gali International Prevention and Response Mechanism meeting.

In late May, the Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia addressed Interpol and demanded that they announce an international search for the man who killed Otkhozoria. However, the killer still remains free and no official information about his whereabouts has been released.