Journalistic Survey
Photo Reportage
Foreign Media about Georgia
Reader's opinion
Children's Rights
Women's Rights

Vanished people – “Never forget me”

September 6, 2018
 Lana Giorgidze

Grandma disappeared a month ago. 73-years-old grandma joined the list of missing people; she disappeared from her own yard, in her native village.

The world marks the day of the disappeared on August 30. In Georgia, more than 2400 people disappeared as a result of 1990s and 2008 armed conflicts; their families are still in vague situation when you do not know to mourn over the deceased person or hope that he/she will appear one day. 

On August 30, 2018 the Red Cross International Committee organized a photo-exhibition to mark the International Day of the Disappeared – “Never forget me”. The family members and relatives of the disappeared people gather on that day and recall painful days, when their beloved people went missing. Majority of them still hope that they will find the relatives. 

Nobody realizes the pain of having a close person disappeared until you face the same problem. However, I do not want that the number of the disappeared increased. It is the tragedy of families and the country, when you are looking for the people without any clue: they are children, adults and the old people.

My family has looked for my grandma everywhere: in the rivers, in the mountains, under bushes, in the houses, in the villages, in the shelters but all in vain. She disappeared without any trace. In similar situation, you try to analyze the behavior of all people; the support from any person is very important when you get irritated with false sympathy from the people. Anyway, I want to tell you about my mother, who is already mourning over her disappeared mother though hopes that one day her mother will meet her in her village house and tell: “I have come back.” I will tell you about the neighbors, kind neighbors, who do their best to look for the granny everywhere and are very passionate; but I can tell you about the neighbors who disseminated rumors and different stories; their support was false. I want to tell about the police, who claimed that they do not have cynologists but three weeks later, upon our stubborn request, they brought cynologist and then waisted time on the search of the missing woman. I can tell you about the relatives, who, like neighbors, are divided in two categories – false support and sincere support. I can tell you about some people, who think that the daughter of the disappeared woman failed to take some urgent measures to search the mother but then got surprised to learn that she did the utmost to look for the mother…

I can tell you about the village fortune-tellers, who call us and tell that they “saw” the grandma somewhere in the village but two days later they changed the position and said that we need to look for her in the river. These fake people become active in similar situations and start “investigation” because they think they are the necessary people.

I want to tell about the media, who go interested in the fate of the 73-years-old woman and supported us. The family members, friends and the colleagues, who are really concerned with the situation and stand with us, take necessary measures to help us.

I am writing about all people, who disappeared, whose stories are a huge tragedy and I hope the state will be more active in the search of these people, and will not segregate them in the categories considering their age because everybody is equal and the state is equally responsible for the lives of any citizen and shall take necessary measures to find them.