Georgia: International Committee of Red Cross holds 14th meeting in Belgrade

Tbilisi: The 14th meeting of the Coordination Mechanism of the International Committee of  Red Cross, consisting of Georgian and Abkhazian participants, was held in Belgrade, which aimed to find and identify the people who were lost as a result of the 1992-93 armed actions in Abkhazia. The meeting was chaired by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) as a neutral mediator.

Until now, the remains of 520 people have been found and exhumed as a result of the coordination mechanism. 215 of these were identified and handed over to their families for proper burial. This has been made possible by the joint efforts and active involvement of all participants of the ongoing, transparent humanitarian process.

The meeting, in addition to the whereabouts of missing persons, stressed the need for further information about the graves and the challenges in the process of identifying them.

Participants exchanged processed information on their hands, which will assist in further investigation and the identification of additional people. Under the coordinating mechanism, 1941 people are still missing; their families are eagerly awaiting a concrete response and an end to years of uncertainty.

Participants agreed on practical steps to make more effort to gather and exchange information and, thereby, speed up the search for missing persons.

The coordinating mechanism for the search of missing persons in Abkhazia as a result of 1992-93 years was created by the ICRC in 2010. Full humanitarian dialogue and their constant involvement in the coordination mechanism among the participants is crucial to determine the fate and whereabouts of missing persons. 

Apart from dialogue, research and identification, the active involvement of all participants in the family support process is crucial to ensure the effectiveness and sustainability of the process.

Marcin Kentacky

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