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Former leader of the Forest Brothers intends to appeal to court2012-11-30 14:46
Former commander of the Forest Brothers David Shengelia considers his imprisonment illegal and intends to use his right to seek a retrial, the Abkhazeti reported.gt-en-newsitem-inside
"I have long raised the issue of the revision of my case, since the case is in Strasbourg. I was detained illegally. Strasbourg Court has taken my case to consideration. I want to challenge the court decision here", Shengelia said. He added he would require compensation for material and moral damages.
As recalled by the Lenta.ru, the group Forest Brothers was established in the early 1990s; it was acting on the territory of Abkhazia, which had previously declared independence from Georgia, and defended it in the ensuing conflict. Guerrillas stated they in particular ensured the safety of the Georgian population in the border region of Abkhazia. In addition, they argued "they were struggling for the restoration of the territorial integrity of Georgia".
"Forest Brothers" were carrying out sabotages on the territory of Abkhazia. They are considered responsible for the deaths of employees of local power structures, as well as Russian peacekeepers and civilians. Shengelia among others threatened to organize a terrorist attack on a train Sochi-Sukhum. Moscow and Sukhum claimed that the group's activities were coordinated by Georgian power structures.
Following the "Rose Revolution" in Georgia guerrilla group was outlawed. Forest Brothers agreed to surrender their weapons. Shengelia was later sentenced to 24 years in prison for illegal possession of arms and drug trafficking. In early 2010, he was early released due to the health condition.