President: Group Violence is Unacceptable, Un-Georgian

"Group violence is unacceptable and un-Georgian," President Salome Zurabishvili said when commenting on the death of 19-year-old footballer Giorgi Shakarashvili.

"I do not recognize aggressive group violence against a person. This is very unacceptable, un-Georgian, and I think we need to go back to our values. An even higher level of courage is the admission of guilt and repentance. Let us all think about this and bring up our young people based on these values," she emphasized.

In her words, "It will be much better if we let the Prosecutor's Office investigated the case and if nobody interferes."

"First of all, I did not know that there were so many investigators in Georgia. I am not an investigator and I am not going to become one.

"It will be much better if we let the Prosecutor's Office investigate the case and if nobody interferes. The investigation would move forward faster then," she noted. 

The body of young football player Shakarashvili was found in the Aragvi River in the vicinity of Mtskheta on June 22 following a 4-day search. 

17 youngsters have been detained on suspicion of being involved in his death. It has been established that the detainees committed illegal deprivation of liberty and group violence against two or more persons. Some of them are charged with failure to report a crime. 

On July 10, asphyxiation by drowning in water was named as the cause of his death. At the same time, the forensic examination established that the body had injuries inflicted by the use of a blunt item shortly before his death.

Based on the results of the forensic examination, the General Prosecutor's Office of Georgia has decided to clarify the qualification of Shakarashvili's case. Premeditated murder in aggravating circumstances committed by a group was added to the already existed qualification of the criminal case, and the investigation into the death of Shakarashvili is carried out in accordance with the mentioned qualification.

The first trial in the case is scheduled for July 31.

By Ana Dumbadze 

Related Story: Premeditated Murder Qualification Added to Footballer Shakarashvili's Death Case

15 July 2020 14:17