Public Defender Meets with Population of Kakheti Region

On August 29-30, 2017, Public Defender Ucha Nanuashvili met with the locals of Pankisi, Ilto and Zemo Alvani in the Kakheti region of Georgia. The meetings showed that the main challenges in the region are social and infrastructural issues.

The villages of the Ilto Gorge are left beyond the mountainous status, even though they meet the main criteria set by the mountain law. The Public Defender addressed the relevant authorities with a recommendation to grant the gorge with a high mountainous status in 2016.

Among the problems of the local population is poor infrastructure, as well as absence of natural gas, outpatient center, pharmacy and shop. Migration of the population is high. Currently only 4 children go to a school that is intended for 200 students. According to the locals, about 80 percent of the population is over the age of 40.

Road infrastructure is a problem in the villages of Tsova-Tusheti as well. Due to the frequent landslide processes, the road in the villages is so damaged that even pedestrians find it difficult to walk there; there is not cell phone or internet connection; people have to pass tens of kilometers by horses in order to reach an area from where they can call ambulance or other services.

Residents of Zemo Alvani complained about the danger of disappearance of Tsova-Tushuri (Batsburi) language and asked for allocation of hours for teaching the language at schools and kindergartens.

The population of Tsova-Tusheti also spoke about the land ownership issue. According to them, they cannot register plots of land on the territory of Tbatana, where their holiday houses and pastures have been historically located.

The Public Defender visited the families of the victims of the special operation conducted in Lanchikuri, Pankisi, on 28-29 August 2012. He also met with members of the Council of Elders and representatives of the Salafi community.

At the end of the visit, the Public Defender discussed the challenges of the region with Kakheti Governor Irakli Kadagishvili. He also got familiarized with the planned projects and spoke about the issues that need to be urgently solved.

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