Analysis, book reviews and photography from Abkhazia and the wider Caucasus — updates when time permits

Grenade attack mars Chuburxinji by-election in Abkhazia

After the death of People’s Assembly member Yuri Kereselidze on November the 1st, the resulting by-election for the Chuburxinji constituency was held Sunday the 9th of January. It was won by Ruslan Kishmaria, the President’s special representative for the Gali district. Kishmaria has long been seen as a moderate figure who has a relatively good understanding with the Mingrelian population.

But the election took a violent turn when a grenade exploded on election day close to Kishmaria’s opponent Gocha Jalagonia, while he was leaving a local church. Jalagonia stated that his relationship with Kishamaria is good, but there seems to be no doubt that he was the target of the attack. Rather incredulously, this is being denied by the public prosecutor, who put the incident down to ‘hooliganism’. Jalagonia was hospitalised with a severe headache, and released on the next morning.

According to the election commission, Kishmaria won 69% of the votes, with the turnout at 42%.

Filed under: Abkhazia, Elections, , , , , , ,

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