DRI: The Prosecutor's Office of Georgia should launch an investigation into the killing of Vitali Karbaia
One month after the killing of Tamaz Ginturi, the occupation has another victim, this time in Abkhazia. 43-year-old Vitali Karbaia, a resident of the village of Tsarche, Gali district, died of injuries sustained as a result of a severe beating by the Gali de facto militia.
On December 6, Vitali Karbaia, who was together with his wife and children, was stopped on the street during the so-called police raid by three officers of the Gali militia in the village of Tsarche, Abkhazia. According to the information provided to the Democracy Research Institute, he was asked to hand over biological material for a drug test on the street. Karbaia told de facto law enforcement officers that he did not want to take a drug test on the street, in a humiliating manner, in front of children, and that he would take his family members home and then go to the Gali militia department. Because of the response, the militiamen severely beat him, as a result of which, he received injuries incompatible with life. Vitali’s family member managed to take him to the Gali clinic by ambulance. When Vitali Karbaia was brought to the clinic, he had his ribs broken, was suffering from concussion and was bleeding. Later, unconscious Karbaia was taken to the Sokhumi republican hospital. December 9 was reported to be the date of his death.

According to the information available to the Democracy Research Institute, the Gali militia department is trying to cover up the militiamen involved in the brutal beating of Vitali Karbaia and to hide the real cause of his death. The case is being formally investigated by a department the employees of which were involved in the brutal beating of the Georgian citizen.

After the extreme protest of Temur Karbaia's relatives, the persons involved in the brutal beating of the deceased were arrested: Gela Tkebuchava, Alika Zarakua and Via (Villy) Zarakua. The local population does not expect justice in the mentioned case, as the deceased is ethnically Georgian.

According to the information provided to the Democracy Research Institute, the militia department of Gali is working on several versions for the falsification of the case: according to one of the versions, the deceased fell down, hit his head and died as a result of an accident; according to the second version, the deceased had been convicted in the past, an operation was underway to arrest him and he resisted the police.

The State Security Service of Georgia has not released an official statement regarding the death of Vitali Karbaia. The media was informed on behalf of the Service that "The occupation regime confirmed the death of a Georgian citizen, but they deny the attempt to illegally arrest Temur Karbaia; The international hotline has been activated..."

The Democracy Research Institute offers its condolences to the family of Vitali Karbaia. The violation of the right to life by the so-called law enforcement officers once again emphasizes the extremely difficult situation of human rights in occupied Abkhazia.
The Democracy Research Institute calls on:

  • the Prosecutor's Office of Georgia to launch an investigation into the killing of a Georgian citizen on the territory of Georgia and charge Gela Tkebuchava, Alika Zarakua and Via (Villy) Zarakua.
  • international organizations to intensify their efforts through international missions to study the compliance of the situation existing in the penal institutions of occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali with international human rights standards.