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Kristine Aghalaryan

Criminal Charges Filed Against Javakhk Armenian Villagers in Church Quarrel

Georgia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs reports that criminal charges of assaulting police and government representatives, property damage, and organized hooliganism have been filed against as yet unnamed residents of the Javakhk village of Gumburdu who tried to gain access to the Holy Resurrection Church on September 30 after being blocked by Georgian police.

Residents of Gumburdu, an Armenian-populated village in Javakhk, wanted to erect a stone cross to pay homage to a recent cache of bones unearthed at the church during ongoing excavations conducted by the Georgian Ministry of Culture.

The ministry says that police have testified that residents threw stones at the police, resulting in casualties, and damaged their vehicles.

Shots were fired during the incident, and two Gumburdu residents were taken into custody.

Georgian Minister of Internal Affairs Georgi Mghebrishvili arrived on the scene, and the two detained residents were later released.

Installation of the stone cross has been delayed.

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