EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM) said it was “concerned” about reports of recent incidents in Gali district of breakaway Abkhazia, which had resulted in the deaths of three local officials, injuries to others, various detentions and reports of some homes being set on fire.
Abkhaz sources reported that an Abkhaz customs officer was killed in an attack in Gali district on June 1 and in a separate shooting incident head of the local administration of a village in Gali district was killed on June 3.
The Georgian sources reported on June 6 that the Abkhaz militia set on fire several houses in the village of Dikhazurga of the Gali district and arrested several local residents there.
“This is a rapidly changing situation and the details remain unclear,” EUMM said in a statement on June 7. “As EUMM has no direct access to the area, it can not ascertain the exact nature or dynamics of these incidents. Whilst local investigations are underway though, it is very important that all sides refrain from comments that could further increase tension in the area. Restraint is needed to ensure that the confidence of the local population is not harmed and stability not endangered.”
The mission has called on the sides to hold a meeting “as soon as possible to ensure co-operation in resolving this situation.”
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