15:04, Tuesday, 26.05.2020
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Government Replies: Shall We Assist Citizens of Turkey and Leave Our Citizens Without Assistance?

Tea Tedliashvili, Gori

Citizen of Turkey Ali Tiariakioghli has been living in Georgia for 12 years already. He was converted to Orthodox Church and married Georgian woman, Mzia Nikorashvili. Ali Tiariakioghli is proud of being an Orthodox though after his decision he had to split with his siblings and parents; the family does not want to continue relationship with Christian.

Wife of Ali is an IDP from Tskhinvali; she lived in the village of Prisi in Gori district and she became an IDP for the second time during the August war in 2008. The authority promised her mother to give a compensation of 10 000 USD though estimated time has already passed and the victim family has not received anything. The family is now renting a flat and the owner demands them to leave the house because they have not paid the rent for two months.

The problem of the mixed family is that they lived in the farm-house in the village of Ditsi, Gori district after initial internal displacement from Tskhinvali. The farm was a state property and it was sold out. The inhabitants had to rent a house in the village of Kvemo Khviti, Gori district and leased 5 hectares of land from local residents. They planted corn, beans and tomatoes on the plot but could not get the harvest because of the war. During the hostilities Ali Tiariakioghli and his wife fled to Tbilisi and sheltered in the building of a Public School for some time. Then they arrived in Gori and sheltered in the tent town; however, they could not stay there for a long time because of cold. Their child, Alijan Nikorashvili is seriously ill and parents could not stay in the tents for a long time. Finally, the young couple rented a flat in Tsmindatskali settlement in Gori.

“We were refused to be assisted; my wife is from Prisi village but the authority did not give us anything. They did not compensate us for the lost harvest. Since we fled from Prisi we are renting a flat; we are not registered anywhere and nobody assists us. My wife is registered in Ditsi village according to her IDP document; the authority suggested her to go and live in Ditsi. We lived there in the farm-house but now they are sold and where should we go? There were many IDPs in Gori at that time and the rent was too high; we had to rent a flat at any price so found a flat for 250 GEL a month (approx. 150 USD). I paid for several months with the support of a Turkish man; but now we owe two-month-rent to our house-lord. He demands his money otherwise I have to leave the house immediately. I applied to the local authority but they did not listen to me. I want to go to Izmir with my family; I cannot leave them here without shelter. My mother-in-law is sheltering in the kindergarten in a small room; we cannot live there. The authority promised her the compensation but it might happen in a month. We are forced out of the flat; I have a house in Izmir and I want to sell it. I am going to come back in three months because I will not be allowed to stay in Turkey after I converted to Christianity. However, I do not have money to travel there. My family needs 300 USD to arrive in Izmir. Cannot the authority assist us with that money, at least?” Said Ali  Tiariakioghli.

Government of Georgia has not worked out any program based on which the population will be compensated for the lost harvest. However, there a lot of families with this problem. Those, who rented the houses hoping they would pay the rent after selling the harvest remained without shelter. The government is oriented on the assistance of the non-governmental organizations and does not do anything to assist its population. However, the president of Georgia and the governmental officials are boasting with increased state budget. The state does not implement special programs for the assistance of IDP or victimized population for a long time already.

Spokesperson of the Shida Kartli regional administration Natia Omadze stated that the regional administration cannot provide people with similar financial assistance because they have only administrative funds. Kakha Toliashvili, head of the administration at Gori Municipality Board, stated the person should apply to the Embassy of Turkey for help because of his nationality.

“Gori district budget does not envisage similar funds. We are working on those people who were victimized during the August war in 2008. these particular people hold old IDP status so we cannot assist the couple with accommodation or funds. As for the lost harvest, a lot of people faced similar problems but we have not assisted any of them yet. Shall we assist citizens of Turkey and leave our citizens without assistance? That person has applied to us for the reimbursement of the damage. He should also apply to the Embassy of Turkey ad we will assist him in this process; we cannot do anything more for him. By the way, he should personally apply to the Embassy but we will kindly help him to send the letter there,” said Toliashvili.

It is difficult for Ali Tiariakioghli to apply to the Embassy of Turkey because he was baptized as an Orthodox by the Cahotlicos-Patriarch of Georgia Ilia II. This fact was also broadcasted by national TV Channels and citizens of Turkey had negative reaction on his decision.

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