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Abkhaz murderer on Interpol wanted list

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Monday, March 20
Interpol has put the Abkhaz murderer of a citizen of Georgia on its wanted list, Georgia’s Interior Ministry says.

The Interpol decision came after the verdicts of Georgia’s western Zugdidi and Kutaisi Courts, which stated that Rashid Kanji-Ogli, an Abkhazian so-called border guard, killed 31-year-old Otkhozoria on territory currently controlled by Georgia.

Initially, the Zugdidi court sentenced Kanji-Ogli to 12 years behind bars on May 19 2016, shortly after the murder.

Several days ago, the Kutaisi Court aggravated the sentence and decided to send the man for 14 years in prison in absentia.

Georgia has several times demanded the extradition of the man to Tbilisi to ensure his fair punishment. However, the de facto leadership rejected the demand.

Otkhozoria was on Georgian-controlled territory when he was gunned down by the border guard stationed near the Administrative Boundary Line.

Otkhozoria was shot six times, including once in the face. He was rushed to hospital but died soon after.

On May 21, Georgia’s Chief Prosecutor’s Office announced that the individual who shot Otkhozoria had been identified.

That same day, video footage was released which showed Otkhozoria retreating from a confrontation with the guards when he was shot.

The Chief Prosecutor’s Office immediately approached Interpol to announce an international search for Otkhozitia’s murderer.