Moscow, February 21, 2017
It is now known that Archpriest George Mamaladze, who was detained at Tbilisi airport on February 10 with a bottle of cyanide in his baggage, previously thought to be intended for His Holiness Patriarch-Catholics Ilia II of Tbilisi and All Georgia who was undergoing gallbladder surgery in Germany, has been accused of plotting the murder of Shorena Tetruashvili, the patriarch’s administrative assistant. This was stated by Fr. George’s lawyer Mikhail Ramishvili.
As RIA-Novosti reports, Chief Prosecutor of Georgia Irakli Shotadze initially stated that the plot was against an unnamed high-ranking clergyman, and his office later ruled out the patriarch as the target. However, TV channel Rustavi 2 reported that the patriarch was possibly the subject of the plot.
“No danger threatened him [the patriarch—ed.]… at this stage the indictment indicates the secretary-assistant,” the lawyer stated live on Georgian television. Lawyers on both sides have signed nondisclosure agreements and so cannot share further details.
Patriarch Ilia returned from Berlin on Monday evening. He was greeted by hundreds of faithful at the airport. He called what happened at home during his absence “regrettable,” promising to keep abreast of the case, and expressing confidence that “all will end well and peacefully.” He has also expressed a desire to meet with Fr. George, “to calm the situation, to cool the excitement, and clarify the truth.”