A LEADING Georgian churchman this week described the situation in his country as “appalling”, despite some signs of a Russian withdrawal.
Archbishop Malkhaz SongulaÂshvili, of the Georgian Evangelical Baptist Church returned to Georgia on Sunday to reports of looting and rape by Russian troops.
He said that the Georgian people feel “humiliated and devastated” by the situation, and he believed many displaced people could die if they did not receive food and shelter before winter.
“I cannot believe what I am seeing on TV footage: Russian soldiers are plundering villages and taking truckÂloads of goods, even people’s clothes. They’re taking everything, and there are reports of rape, and people being kidnapped for ransom, by South Ossetians backed by Russian troops.”
The Archbishop estimates that about 60,000 people have fled to the capital Tbilisi, where they are being housed in hospitals and schools, often with little medical or food supplies.