Internal Affairs Minister Rules Out Georgian-Russian Joint Operation in Pankisi

(Tbilisi, January 20, Civil Georgia) – “Georgia is able to crackdown criminals in Pankisi gorge without any assistance,” Georgian Internal Affairs Minister Koba Narchemashvili stated in interview to the state TV channel.

The Minister categorically denied possibility of Georgian-Russian joint operations in the criminal-ridden gorge.

Georgian law enforcement agencies launched operative-investigative actions to free the hostages, remove firearms and eliminate drug trafficking in the gorge a week ago.

Despite the law enforcers’ activity local population of Akhmeta region, where Pankisi gorge is located, continue protesting demanding from the law enforcement agencies a complete crackdown of criminals.

Two people still remain detained by the kidnappers in the gorge.