09 April 2018, 09:30

Week in the Caucasus: review of main events of April 2-8, 2018

Celebration of Easter by Orthodox believers in Southern Russia; second anniversary of the aggravation of the Karabakh conflict; collapse at a mine in Georgia, – see the review of these and other events in the Caucasus during the week of April 2-8, 2018, prepared by the "Caucasian Knot".

Orthodox believers of Southern Russia celebrate Easter

On April 8, Orthodox believers of Southern Russia celebrated Easter, one of the most important Christian holidays. In Kizlyar, during the festive service, the police guarded the entrance to the temple, where believers were shelled in February. According to local residents, the attack united members of the Orthodox community without affecting the interreligious relations. Churches, where the festive services were held, were also guarded in other regions, for example, in Krasnodar, to where Holy Fire was delivered from Jerusalem this year. For the first fire, Holy Fire from the Church of the Holy Sepulcher was also delivered to Sochi. In Grozny, the Easter service at the Archangel Michael Church was attended only believers but also by soldiers and officers.

In Volgograd Region, melting ice on rivers causes flooding

Last week, in the Volgograd Region, about 900 houses were flooded. Starting from April 3, various districts began to announce the emergency regime. Residents of the Ternovka village told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent that they spent five days in their houses in waiting for the end of the flooding, without receiving any help from the authorities. Casualties were not avoided: on April 7, a woman was killed by electric current in a flooded house in the Novoanninskiy District.

On anniversary of Karabakh conflict aggravation, experts claim risk of resumption of hostilities

Last week two years passed since the four-day aggravation of the Karabakh conflict, after which the parties announced a truce on April 5, 2016. During the next two years, shelling in the conflict zone was not ceased even for a single day, as follows from the infographics prepared by the "Caucasian Knot" and entitled "Karabakh after the truce: two years of war". On April 2, in Nagorno-Karabakh, local residents laid flowers on the graves of the victims to pay tribute to their memory. In Baku, experts have declared the risk of a resumption of the hostilities, but Yerevan believes that is unlikely to happen. Meanwhile, in Azerbaijan, residents of frontline villages refuse to leave their houses despite fear and shelling.

Nine persons fell victim to a mine collapse in Georgia

On April 5, six persons were killed and three others were seriously injured when the "Mindeli" mine collapsed in Tkibuli. Georgia declared mourning. The "Gruzcoal" Company called the tragedy a technogenic disaster. Irakli Kupradze, a member of the NGO "Auditorium 115", believes the tragedy was provoked by the activities of the politicians who opposed effective labour inspection. In 2017, "more than 10 reports" about the deaths of people in the workplace came from Georgia, the international human rights organization "Amnesty International" (AI) stated in its report. According to the calculations run by the "Caucasian Knot", in 2017, at least five workers were killed only at the "Mindeli" mine.

In Southern Russia, several shopping and entertainment centres closed because of violations of fire safety rules

After the tragedy at the "Winter Cherry" shopping complex in Kemerovo, where 64 people were killed by the fire, mass inspections of children's institutions and shopping centres were launched in Southern Russia and in other regions of the country. In the Stavropol Territory, the Prosecutor's Office managed to suspend the operation of six shopping centres. Numerous violations have been also revealed in other entertainment centres. In particular, on April 4, the Prosecutor's Office issued a resolution to close three children's centres in Khasavyurt, and on April 2, it was reported about the closure of the children's centre in Rostov-on-Don. On March 30, in Makhachkala, the Tsumada market appeared to face a threat of closure because of numerous violations of fire safety rules.

Employees of Batumi port hold strike and hunger strike and succeed in seeking general director's resignation

On April 2, 12 workers of the Batumi sea port started a strike against the plans of the "Batumi Oil Terminal" to reorganize the company and reduce the number of employees. The strikers demanded the resignation of the port director. On April 5, the port workers stopped their strike and hunger strike, since Daniyar Mukhamed-Rakhim, the general director of the Batumi sea port, had resigned. The decision on his resignation was the result of the negotiations mediated by Zaal Mikeladze, Minister for Public Health of Adjara.

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