Eastern Europe: Georgian Regional Governor Shot to Death

Giorgi (aka Gia) Mebonia, the [head administrator] of the Tsalenjikha district of Georgia, has been killed in an attack close to the border with Abkhazia.

Mebonia was on an tour of villages in the area with an European Union monitoring team.

Three Georgian policemen were also injured in the attack, on Saturday.

Officials said that shooting had been reported after a land mine was detonated.

A police officer travelling with the group told Russian television that shots came without warning “from the Russian side”.

via Al Jazeera: Georgia official dies near Abkhazia

At least two other people, possibly including the home owner, were reported to have been injured in the blast.

A ministry spokesman blamed Abkhaz separatists and their Russian backers.

Shota Utiashvili told the AP agency that authorities found an antenna near the blast site and said this suggested the explosion was activated by remote control, but it was not possible to verify the claim.

Tension has been high in the region after fighting began on 7 August, when Georgia tried to retake South Ossetia by force after a series of lower-level clashes with Russian-backed rebels.

Russia launched a counter-attack and the Georgian troops were ejected from both South Ossetia and Abkhazia days later.

via BBC News: Mebonia killed in Georgian village

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