Statement by the Embassy of Japan in Georgia on “the sentence” for Georgian Citizen by so-called “the authorities in South Ossetia”

1. On February 5, 2021, Georgian citizen, Mr. Zaza Gakheladze, detained by “the authorities in South Ossetia” since July 2020, was reported to be “sentenced” to 12 years and 6 months in prison.
2. The Embassy of Japan in Georgia expresses deep concern with “this sentence” and calls for the immediate release of Mr. Gakheladze. This case shows deterioration of human rights situation in Georgia’s occupied regions of Tskhinvali/South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
3. The Embassy of Japan reiterates Japan’s position that it is essential for peace and stability of Georgia and South Caucasus region to resolve the issue concerning Tskhinvali/South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions peacefully in line with the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity within Georgia’s internationally recognized borders. Japan opposes any attempts to change the internationally recognized borders of Georgia.