Disinformation: “Turkish special forces teams entered the Rioni valley.”

Verdict: FAKE NEWS

On 6 April 2021, Facebook user Davit Nemsadze posted a video on his personal account where he offered his commentary on the 4 April events in the Rioni valley and blamed the Government of Georgia for acting in Turkey’s interests and bringing in Turkish special forces teams.

In particular, Davit Nemsadze made the following statement in the video: “The Turkish state sent its special forces because of the Namakhvani HPP. Be aware that these forces have the so-called Robocop equipment. They did this in case there is a confrontation with the locals and the Georgian public to make sure no mercy is shown and people are ruthlessly dealt with… And trust me, the Turks are capable of doing that.”

Neither Georgian nor Turkish official bodies have confirmed sending Turkish special forces teams to Georgia in relation to the Namakhvani HPP construction and the author of the video has not produced any evidence to corroborate his allegations.

On 4 April 2021, the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) of Georgia released a statement saying that the employees of various units of the MIA had been mobilised to ensure safety and the rule of law in the Rioni valley.

Davit Nemsadze, himself a retired service member who has worked in different structures of the Ministry of Defence, currently lives in France and calls himself a political refugee. He has been notoriously employing xenophobic and anti-Turkish rhetoric and frequently spreads groundless information about the Turkish state and “Turkey-linked” Georgian organisations and individuals. Mr Nemsadze has also been voicing anti-Turkish messages in regard to the Namakhvani HPP construction in the past.

Davit Nemsadze has close ties with the Georgian March and its leader, Sandro Bregadze, whilst his brother and former military service member, Ermalo Nemsadze, is an active member of that political party. We would like to remind our readers that Ermalo Nemsadze called on the Russian authorities to send special forces to Georgia to kill TV anchor Giorgi Gabunia and Director of the Mtavari Channel, Nika Gvaramia.

FactCheck also reached the press service of the MIA for clarification in regard to Davit Nemsadze’s allegations in the video. In a telephone conversation, the MIA press service confirmed that Turkish special forces teams were not sent to the Rioni valley.


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