The messenger logo

Gov’t and Church should cooperate

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Thursday, February 23
Georgia’s Catholics Patriarch Ilia II, who returned from Germany where he had been operated on, stated that all the sides should cooperate over the investigation of an alleged murder attempt.

Ilia II stated “a very strange situation took place” during his absence and that Georgia’s church “never witnessed” such a development.

The Patriarch stated there were questions which should be answered, as “the public is alarmed”.

“The church and the government should carry out a joint investigation. I believe everything will be completed positively,” Ilia II stated.

Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor Irakli Shotadze, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, President Giorgi Margvelashvili and detained cleric Giorgi Mamaladze’s lawyer Mikheil Ramishvili have already met the Patriarch.

President Margvelashvili stressed the principle of equality must be protected and Mamaladze’s lawyers must have the right to speak out about the details of the case, as two lawyers of Mamaladze had signed a confidentiality agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office.

Now the lawyers are asking for an annulment of the deal.

The third lawyer of Mamaladze, Ramishvili, who has no such agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office, says Mamaladze is innocent and the man has “significant proof”.

The lawyer says Mamaladze is going to give a detailed testimony to the investigation in the coming days.

Human rights defender Nana Kakabadze says “all priests” except the Patriarch have already listened to the Prosecutor’s Office's audio recording evidence, and all but one of them are in agreements.

“All high-ranking priests with the exception of Metropolitan Petre are unanimous that the investigation must end shortly and that Father Giorgi Mamaladze mustn’t be released on bail, as it could put his life at risk,” Kakabadze said.

The case is still under the investigation. Now as different parties are taking interest in the case it should be solved and all the questions should be answered as soon as possible.

It still remains unknown what is written in the charge and what is recorded in the footage the Prosecutor’s Office says they have as evidence.

Meanwhile, some members of the opposition are taking advantage of unclear situation and are demanding the firing of General Prosecutor Shotadze.