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High-rank clergy official detained

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, February 14
Father Giorgi Mamaladze, head of the Patriarchate’s Property Management Service, was detained at Tbilisi International Airport and transferred to a detention facility.

The police didn't name the reason of the arrest, but some priests said there was an attempt to poison Patriarch Ilia II, and Mamaladze was involved in this.

The Patriarchate said they weren't aware of the reason of the detention.

Meanwhile, the Patriarch’s operation to treat gallbladder difficulties was completed successfully in Germany on February 13, the Patriarchate announced.

On February 10, father Giorgi Mamaladze was arrested at the airport, when leaving for Germany to visit the Patriarch.

The reason of his detention remains unknown, since the official agencies have not yet commented on it.

As reported, the case was classified as 'confidential'.

According to the Rustavi 2 TV channel, the Patriarch’s chief guard, Soso Okhanashvili, was questioned for the case.

"There are some questions: who wanted to kill the Patriarch? Who instructed Mamaladze to act? There are enough killers in the one should have their crimes covered up," said Archimandrite Bartholomew Phirtskhalashvili?

Akhalkalaki and Kumurdo Metropolitan, Father Nikoloz said, who is accompanying Ilia II in Germany, says the Patriarch doesn’t believe someone tried to kill him.

"I cannot believe that there might be such people in Georgia. No one knows what happened,” Father Nikoloz said.

So far no official statement or comments were made by the Church. Ordinary Georgian citizens are expressing their utmost concern on the case.