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IDPs Without IDP Status

09.09.2009
Tea Tedlishvili, Gori

413 IDP families still live in nursery schools in Gori. Among them are people from the village of Zardiaantkari in Gori district which is not located in the Patara Liakhvi Valley (former buffer zone). IDPs say their houses were not damaged during the war but Georgian police does not allow them to enter the village and cross so-called border.

“Nothing was stolen from my house before April 2009 and somebody robbed it 8 months after the war... If I were allowed to enter the village, I could have taken at least some properties from the house. Now our police are blaming us for not having taken things from our house but it was their fault; we managed to enter the village only via roundabouts. Now we are prohibited to enter the village at all. What shall we do? They give neither house nor compensation here; they should allow us into the village; how long shall we shelter at our relatives and nursery schools?” said Luba Taziashvili from Zardiaantkari.

“We left the village in November, 2008 only after life became unbearable there. We were attacked and got scared. So we arrived in Gori and authority lodged us into nursery schools. However, we did not stay there for a long time because it is very difficult to stay there for a long time. Large halls and corridors are divided with curtains and different families live in small parts of one large hall. We have been sheltering at our relative’s for more than one year and nobody pays attention to us. They give bread and dry food once a month. They gave neither house nor compensation to us; we cannot stay at our relative’s for a long time,” said IDP Nargiza Aghdgomelashvili from Zardiaantkari.

Manana Champuridze head of the Shida Kartli and Samtskhe-Javakheti regional department of the Ministry of Refugees and Accommodation said they will give houses to 400 IDP families. Construction of 300 houses out of them is funded by the German technical Aaid organization GTZ. 100 more houses are constructed in the village of Sakasheti, Gori district by Turkish Company. Champuridze said the new cottages will be assigned to the IDPs from Didi and Patara Liakhvi Gorges who live in nursery schools in Gori and in various buildings in Tbilisi. Part of IDPs will receive compensation. However, the fate of residents of Zardiaantkari is still unclear; nobody knows how long they will stay without status; the government has not worked out any position in regard with these people even 13 months after the war. Governmental officials claim the problem will be resolved in near future.

“The status of the people from Zardiaantkari and other villages without any control is not discussed yet. As far as I know the district administration intends to grant different status to then,” said Manana Champuridze.

Kaha Toliashvili, head of the office at the Gori district administration, said the issue of the people from Zardiaantkari is still being discussed. “We are waiting for the decision of the central government. They should decide to return these people to the village or not. Only after that we will grant status to them. We do not know whether they will receive compensation or cottages. We work on this problem and the government of Georgia shall decide what to do. Meanwhile they shall remain in nursery schools; these people are included in all aid programs before their problem is resolved,” said Kakha Toliashvili.

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