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PM meets with US and EU Ambassadors, asking for maximum support to free Zaza Gakheladze

By Nika Gamtsemlidze
Monday, February 8
Prime Minister of Georgia Giorgi Gakharia met with the international partners of the country. The meeting between the Ambassador of the United States of America Kelly Degnan, EU Ambassador to Georgia Carl Hartzell, and Georgian PM Giorgi Gakharia, aimed at discussing the recent extension of the unlawful detention of Georgian citizen Zaza Gakheladze in the occupied region of Georgia, Tskhinvali.

The Prime Minister of Georgia asked its international partners for their maximum support in the process of freeing illegally detained Zaza Gakheladze and other citizens of the country. The Prime Minister emphasized the importance of making use of diplomatic and legal mechanisms on an international level. As for the diplomats, they reiterated their concern over the decision of the de-facto court in Tskhinvali on extending the detention of a Georgian citizen, adding that he must be released immediately.

Kelly Degnan noted that it was extremely important to meet and discuss this situation.

“The United States is very concerned and condemns the recent action taken yesterday against an illegally detained Georgian citizen, who has been detained since last July, on charges that are completely fabricated as far as we can tell. And we hope that there will be serious consideration given to resolving this quickly and releasing this Georgian citizen as soon as possible,” noted the US Ambassador to Georgia.

Head of the EU Delegation to Georgia Carl Hartzell said that this situation raises a lot of concern. According to him, they have been following this case for months now, and they have been working through various instruments, including IPRM, the hotline, the Geneva Talks and others.

“We are urging for the immediate release from illegal detention. And we will be continuously following up on this issue. I am very grateful for being called to the Prime Minister's Office to have a chance to discuss the situation. We are in full agreement on the need to continuously follow this issue very closely, because it is a concern,” added Carl Hartzell.

The meeting's participants also included the Head of the Administration of the Georgian Government Kakhaber Kemoklidze.

According to the Government of Georgi, they continue active efforts toward the mobilization of the international community. The government of the country once again urges its international partners to provide adequate response to yet another provocation by Russia's occupation regime and take effective measures toward the immediate release of the illegally detained Georgian citizen.