IDP

First, they came for… someone!

Originally posted on the author’s blog.

By Giorgi Kikonishvili

“First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.”

This is the story of how a pastor Martin Niemoller,  Hitler’s ex-supporter was left alone in front of the destructive power of the Fuhrer, just because he didn’t fought against the unfairness at the right time, due to the personal careerist or non-careerist interests. He didn’t meddle in!

Almost twenty years ago over 300,000 people were forced to leave their homes and to go, well, anywhere, on the another part of Georgia. On they road, part of the people were victims of other Georgians, who were expecting some “profit” from the IDP’s “wealth”. some of the IDPs became victims of unbearable weather conditions and mostly of the starvation. People, who at least more or less peacefully arrived alive at other cities, were housed in the old buildings, mostly in the inhuman conditions. During the twenty years some of them managed to adopt new life conditions, they even got new jobs, began business activities. Unfortunately many IDPs were dead due to the psychical and psychological traumas provoked by the war. For the last twenty years tens of thousand our civilians, living near us, were absolutely ignored, as if they didn’t live. Their trouble was NOT considered as ours, as well. We were ready to held tens of drinking parties, to drink those hypocritical toasts about our “beautiful country and people”, whereas the IDPs, living in our neighborhood might have the ability to either buy a brad, or not.

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Georgia: Blogger action in support of evicted IDPs

Also posted on Global Voices

By Mirian Jugheli

Four months ago, on 11 October 2010, Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who fled the wars over the breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia began to protest government indifference towards them. Tented in the yard of the Ministry of IDPs from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees of Georgia, several IDPs have been demanding that the government halt evictions, which have so far seen over 80 families removed from temporary accommodation, and to provide them with proper housing.

However, not a single official has come to talk to them about these issues and their concerns that alternative accommodation offered by the government is located in villages isolated from regional centers and which lack proper schools and hospitals. Online publications such as EurasiaNet have already reported about conditions in such locations, noting that the new housing often lacks windows and basic amenities such as water, electricity and gas.

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Ethnic Map of Georgia

This is an ethnic map of Georgia that was released by the European Centre For Minority Issues. It is a bit outdated because it was released in January, 2009, but no other similar map has been released since then.

According to the data there were 239,872 Georgians in Abkhazia in 1989, however according to 2009 data there are approximately 45,000-65,000 left, who either stayed after the war or returned mainly around Gali (which is the closest town to the Georgian border).

According to the same data there were 28,544 officially registered Georgians in South Ossetia in 1989, today the there are only 2-3,000.

Take a look at more interesting info at the map below:

Most of the young Georgians from Abkhazia have IDP status and they live around Georgia or around the world. Those from Abkhazia have not had a chance to get back to their homes for almost 20 years, some of them even don’t remember how their houses look/looked (because part of the property was either burned or destroyed). Will they ever have a chance to stand on their homeland? Nobody has an answer..