Church Intervenes to Bring Soldiers’ Bodies Back
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 16 Aug.'08 / 21:21

“Too many” bodies of Georgian soldiers killed in fighting in South Ossetia are now in  Shindisi, a village between Gori and Tskhinvali, a representative of the Georgian Orthodox Church said on August 16.

Ilia II, the Patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church, traveled in the conflict zone on August 15 after appealing to Aleksey II, the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, to mediate in his access to the conflict zone, which is currently under the control of Russian forces and the South Ossetian militias.

Davit Sharashenidze, the Georgian Orthodox Church’s spokesman, told journalists on Saturday that it is of urgent need to take corpses out from the conflict zone, otherwise he said dead bodies pose an epidemic threat.

At a news conference he was asked to say how many dead bodies he saw in the village of Shindisi, tens or hundreds; he, however, said “I can not say;” but also added: “too many.”  

An officail number of Georgian deaths since the beginning of the conflict is 175, including 115 Georgian soldiers. That number is expected to grow.

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