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Strange Arithmetic for the Repressed

31.08.2011

ECHR determined 4000 Euros compensation for the repressed, Tbilisi City Court – 400 GEL

Mariam Imerlishvili

Zeinab Burdiashvili is a daughter of the victim of Soviet repressions Dimitri Burdiashvili. Dimitri Burdiashvili was one of the 33 conspirators of 1941. He got the hope of liberation of Georgia from Soviet regime after the start of WWII. Their action plan was just in the form of idea when they were suddenly arrested.

“My dad was arrested on December 20th of 1941. I was just two years old. I found out about his death later. As we found out he was tried by the military tribunal of Transcaucasia Front and was sentenced to death penalty. My mother and I lived under the constant fear. There was a big possibility that my mom would be imprisoned. For years we were pressured by the government,” – states Zeinab Burdiashvili.

Later Dimitri Burdiashvili was rehabilitated and was acknowledged to be the repressed. As of today, there are hundreds of repressed people in Georgia and the heirs of first line of the repressed. The state undertook certain responsibilities in relation of these people according to the Law on Acknowledging Victims of Political Repression and Social Protection of Repressed which took force starting from January 1st of 1998. According to the amendments of May 19th of 2011 the financial compensation can be requested by an individual who was repressed during February 25th of 1921 and October 28th of 1990. In order to do so it is necessary to submit complaint to Tbilisi City Court till January of 2014 requesting the financial compensation. The Ministry of Finance will represent the defendant’s side.

The court should consider the heaviness of repression, the age of the repressed or the heir of first line of the repressed and their health state; the repressed individual shall indicate the amount of compensation money. These are the provisions established by the Georgian legislation which are not fulfilled in reality.

Human Rights Center helped Zeinab Burdiashvili to submit the complaint to court.

Tbilisi City Court determined that Zeinab Burdiashvili, as the first line heir of the repressed will receive only 400 GEL as a compensation. The decision of judge Nino Oniani has not been transferred to the applicant yet. Thus, it is not clear what arguments the court had when it determined 400 GEL as a compensation. The applicant does not even know whether this 400 GEL is compensation or some other payment.

“This is an embarrassing fact. We are not talking about the amount of money but about the insult they committed against us. After the state was commissioned to pay compensation to the repressed, we all submitted complaint. We stood in lines, spent our time and resources and for what?! to receive some ridiculous amount of money? I saw people there who received 400 and 300 GEL. Is this the compensation which the state is going to pay for the repressed and their heirs?! This is insulting us and nothing else!” – notes Zeinab Burdiashvili with sorrow.

People who are not satisfied with the court decision can protest against it, but they practically have no chance of gaining better result.

Lawyer of Human Rights Center Eka Kobesashvili states that based on this concrete fact we can conclude that the state is not going to appreciate the people who were the victims of Soviet regime.

According to the law, the court should hear the complaint of each of the repressed in two month period. Zeinab Burdiashvili notes that nobody considered their concern in the court. The appealing probably has no meaning since the state is not going to pay more for the repressed and their heirs.

“It is true that we do not have the decision on Zeinab Burdiashvili’s case yet, but we can assume that the repressed people and in this case Ms. Zeinab was treated irresponsibly and indifferently. They did not consider her age or health. This, in itself is a sad fact. The only solution is the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg,” – states Eka Kobesashvili.

It should be noted that some repressed individuals already submitted complaint to ECHR. Particularly, this complaint belonged to brothers Klaus and Iuri Kiladzes. On February 2nd of 2010, ECHR made a decision for the benefit of Kiladzes in the case of “Klaus and Iuri Kiladzes against Georgia.” The state of Georgia was imposed to pay compensation of 4000-4000 Euros and conduct general measures which would rehabilitate the rights of individuals in the same situation.

According to Zeinab Burdiashvili’s complaint we can conclude how the state fulfills the undertaken obligations. It is interesting how the judge Nino Oniani calculated 4000 Euros to be 400 GEL. We will find out about this from the court decision which has not been handed to the applicant yet.

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