08TBILISI2017, GEORGIA: RED CROSS STAFF MEMBER SHARES

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08TBILISI2017 2008-10-30 13:51 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN Embassy Tbilisi

VZCZCXRO9335
PP RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHSI #2017 3041351
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 301351Z OCT 08 ZDK
FM AMEMBASSY TBILISI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0310
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L TBILISI 002017 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EUR/CARC 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/23/2018 
TAGS: PGOV PHUM GG
SUBJECT: GEORGIA: RED CROSS STAFF MEMBER SHARES 
OBSERVATIONS ABOUT IDPS 
 
Classified By: CDA Kent Logsdon for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
1.  (C) Begin Summary and Comment:  A Tbilisi-based 
International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) staff member 
shared her observations about IDPs and GoG efforts to address 
their situation with Poloff during an October 22 meeting. 
ICRC is currently the only international organizations that 
has country-wide access or presence; therefore, IDPS have 
been seeking assistance from ICRC regarding their return. 
ICRC is usually cautious about sharing information.  The 
surprising openness reflects ICRC's serious concern for the 
situation of IDPS who live in Gori and about the lost 
livelihoods of Georgians who previously traveled to 
Tskhinvali but no longer can.  End Summary and Comment. 
 
2.  (C)  Dka Dulic (please protect), ICRC Protection 
Coordinator, shared with Poloff the following observations 
with regards to displaced persons as a result of the August 
hostilities.  ICRC has access all over the country including 
the  buffer zone, South Ossetia, and Abkhazia.  Her staff is 
international, but does not include any Russians. 
 
3.  (C)  According to Dulic, Georgians (or so it appeared 
from their names) have been coming to ICRC offices asking for 
help to cross into South Ossetia.  Some of them before lived 
in Gori and traveled everyday to Tskhinvali for work.  Now 
their jobs and livelihoods are gone as they cannot pass 
through the checkpoints. 
 
4.  (C)  There is some opinion among ICRC staff members that 
GoG did not properly consult with IDPs before busing them 
back to their point of origin.  She specifically mentioned a 
quote in the press from parliamentarian Koba Subeliani (who 
was named on October 29 as the new Minister of Refugee 
Affairs), who stated, "Damage to houses are less than what we 
expected--we expected more damage.  It is safe for IDPs to 
return as Georgian police have taken control over de-occupied 
areas."  She suggested that he issued this statement to give 
legitimacy to GoG actions to get IDPs out of the camps and 
back home very quickly.  (Comment:  Poloff also heard this 
from a visiting academic, who said the GoG chose not to issue 
remuneration to families hosting IDPs in order to discourage 
lengthy stays. End Comment.) 
 
5.  (C)  According to Dulic, when Georgian police were able 
to return to the former "buffer zone" in undisputed Georgian 
territory located behind the Russian checkpoints, they 
arrested any South Ossetians they found there, and some 
remain in detention.  She didn't have specific numbers, but 
was planning to visit detention facilities to get a better 
idea.  Those IDPs from the Abkhaz war in the 1990s have been 
very dissatisfied with what they believed was preferential 
treatment from the government in settling the August 7 IDPs. 
IDPs from Kodori in the Abkhazia region, estimated to be 
about 2000 people who were also displaced in August, were 
particularly bitter about the lack of inclusion in 
resettlement discussions and actions. 
LOGSDON

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