Former Deputy Interior Minister and head of border police, Zurab Gamezardashvili, said he was to leave his post on November 22. Soon after tendering his resignation, Gamezardashvili departed for Russia. According to Rustavi 2, the General Investigative Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs is reviewing the work of the former head of the border police.
The State Audit Office of Georgia has found numerous violations in his work. Rustavi 2 added that the Investigative Department is examining violations related to purchases made through tenders and illegal enterprise.
Opposition members have expressed their concern about Gamezardashvili’s visit to Russia, given his privileged access to confidential information. However, government officials have stated that they were unaware of his exact whereabouts.
Expert in security issues, Nodar Kharshiladze, expressed his concern stating that “this sounds more like a tragicomedy. Russia is a country which is occupying 20% of our territories, they are openly wrangling with us. They have been responsible for barbed - wire fences and for detaining Georgians on the administrative border line. The person responsible for ensuring that there’s no such crawling occupation or entanglements visits Russia every month.”
Member of the United National Movement, Giorgi Kandelaki, stated that “Gamezardashvili was one of the most important figures in Ivanishvili’s ruling. When a person of this importance who had so much confidential information runs to Russia, this is indicative of the existence of severe issues and just how demolished our national security is.”
On December 8, Gamezardashvili stated that “this is a targeted dirty PR campaign against my dignity. I confirm that I am indeed in Moscow for the birthday of a very close friend. I haven’t heard about any violations from the State Audit Office of Georgia. If it had any, it would send them to the Prosecutor’s Office. As I know, the Investigative Department hasn’t reported any violations yet. I will be returning to Tbilisi tomorrow.”
Zurab Gamezardashvili served as the head of the border police for three years. According to official statements, he tendered his resignation of his own free will on November 18.