Proposal to Interim Governmental Commission for the Needs of Villages Located along the Dividing Line

The Public Defender has addressed the Co-Chairmen of the Interim Governmental Commission for the Needs of Villages Located along the Dividing Line with a proposal about the necessity of taking efficient efforts for realization of social rights of the affected population.

Clean drinking water is still not supplied to many villages of Shida Kartli region that are situated along the dividing line. The Public Defender has been informed that water is microbiologically contaminated in the village of Khviti, Kaspi municipality, where a new water reservoir was built within the framework of the Rural Support Program in 2014. Independent laboratory examination showed that the concrete bottom and walls of the reservoir are damaged, the well cannot be hermetically locked and runoff gets into it during rainfall.

The problems related to the right to ownership and adequate housing are also acute, especially in the village of Zardiaantkari, Gori municipality, which had been occupied until 2012. For that reason, the houses damaged during war have not been rehabilitated and locals are unable to permanently return to their village.

Residents of some of the villages bordering the dividing line are particularly worried about safety issues. In particular, they are concerned about limited cell-phone service and lack of police checkpoints that may appear disastrous to their health and security.

The Public Defender’s proposal also touches upon issues such as removal of social status, school and road problems in the village of Atotsi, Kareli municipality, and infrastructure problems in the village of Khurcha, Zugdidi municipality.

Under the Constitution and international agreements the Government of Georgia is obliged to protect social-economic rights of persons lacking adequate resources and take efforts for practical realization of these rights, which significantly contributes to social equality in the state.

The Public Defender addresses the Commission with the following recommendations:

To allocate funds for rehabilitation of houses damaged during war in the shortest time, including in the village of Zardiaantkari of Gori municipality.

To make an optimal decision for ensuring mobile or fixed telephone communications in the conflict-affected villages.

To establish the degree of traumas of children affected by war and to develop special school programs aimed at social and psychological rehabilitation of the children displaced during war or living in the conflict zone.

To open additional checkpoints in the village of Fakhulani of Tsalenjikha municipality and in the village of Jariasheni of Gori municipality.

To provide conflict-affected population with clean drinking water. In particular, relevant bodies to carry out regular maintenance of water supply system; to ensure effective decontamination of water in compliance with the government’s decree No 62 of January 15, 2014 (Technical Regulations: Rules of Disinfection of Water Facilities and Chlorine Decontamination of Centralized and Local Agricultural Water); to inform population of water quality.

Construction of a public school building and restoration of a road in the village of Atotsi to be set as priorities; to improve social infrastructure in the village of Khurcha in time, namely, to rehabilitate school and electricity lines there.

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