Peace Corps Georgia: Evacuation in 2008

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The Peace Corps program in Georgia was established in 2001. Since that time more than 275 Volunteers have served there. The 85 Volunteers and Volunteer-trainees currently serving in Georgia are working in English language education, business and social entrepreneurship programs.

The Peace Corps program in Georgia was established in 2001. Since that time more than 275 Volunteers have served there. The 85 Volunteers and Volunteer-trainees currently serving in Georgia are working in English language education, business and social entrepreneurship programs.

Contents

2008

2008: RPCV Cuttino's Site writes: "Heavy Fighting" in South Ossetia

For those of you who have seen the news in the last few hours, the South Ossetian conflict, which has been boiling for years now, has become very violent. The threat of a new war is growing. I have every confidence that Peace Corps will take care of its volunteers; for me, I am safe in Turkey. We can only hope and pray that this violence does not spread further and threaten the progress for which my friends in Georgia have worked so hard. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Personal Web Site. ""Heavy Fighting" In South Ossetia Aug 7, '08 10:05 Pm" August 7, 2008.


2008: Peace Corps Volunteers in Georgia are Safe

Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter announced today that all Volunteers and trainees serving in the Republic of Georgia are accounted for and safe. There are 38 Peace Corps Volunteers and 47 Peace Corps Volunteer-trainees serving in Georgia. All of the Peace Corps Volunteers and trainees in Georgia are on stand-fast mode, requiring that they remain in their communities and in regular contact with the Peace Corps/Georgia staff. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Peace Corps Press Release. "Peace Corps Volunteers In Georgia Are Safe" August 8, 2008.


2008: Russia sent troops rolling into a breakaway region of Georgia after Georgian troops sought to enter the capital of the pro-Russian enclave, in a sharp escalation of the longstanding conflict

Georgia is a strong American ally whose shift toward the West and pursuit of NATO membership has angered Russia. Washington said Friday that it would send an envoy to the region to try to broker an end to the fighting. The clashes raised the specter of a wider conflict in the Caucasus region, a key conduit for the flow of oil from the Caspian Sea to world markets and an area where violent conflict has flared for years along Russia’s borders, most recently in Chechnya. Georgian forces said Friday that they had won control of the capital of the rebel enclave, South Ossetia, but Russian peacekeepers in the city said they had not seen Georgian troops in the capital, Tskhinvali. One unconfirmed report said Georgian forces had shot down two Russian planes; Georgia said its aircraft had bombed a convoy of Russian tanks that moved into the area. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: New York Times. "Russia Sends Troops Into Rebel Enclave In Georgia" August 8, 2008.


2008: PCV B & C Go To Georgia writes: "We Interrupt Our Regular Progamming..."

As you may have seen on BBC or CNN, Georgia and South Ossetia have come to blows again (South Ossetia is the breakaway region just north of Gori). Gori, as you may remember, is where we lived last summer during training. This year, luckily, the trainees are in a different location. Gori is, still, however, on the main road between our site and Tbilisi. There's been fighting and troop movement for the past few days, as happens every few months and we were on Alert, but everything seemed well enough this morning. The highway is out and we're on standfast (meaning we're to stay put), so, conversely, I'm stuck in Tbilisi, while Brenden can't get here. Meanwhile, one of the bombs hit the major cell phone company's office in Gori, so cell phone service is unreliable. However, since I'm at the Peace Corps office in Tbilisi, I should be safe and have Internet access, and although Brenden isn't, he's with the Peace Corps staff. Neither of us are near the border with South Ossetia, so although things will probably get worse before they get better, I'm not worried about our safety. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Personal Web Site. ""We Interrupt Our Regular Progamming..."" August 8, 2008.


2008: Peace Corps does not operate in South Ossetia, a separatist region located in the north of Georgia along its border with Russia and there are no Volunteers located in that region

Peace Corps does not operate in South Ossetia, a separatist region located in the north of Georgia along its border with Russia and there are no Volunteers located in that region. All 85 in country are accounted for and safe.� Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: PCOL Exclusive. "We Just Received An Email From Peace Corps Press Director Amanda Beck Emphasizing That Peace Corps Does Not Operate In South Ossetia, A Separatist Region Located In The North Of Georgia Along Its Border With Russia And There Are No Volunteers Located In That Region." August 8, 2008.


2008: Russia-Georgia unrest worries Fargo parents

North Dakota State University vice president Prakash Mathew is one of the Fargo-area parents with a child volunteering with the Peace Corps in Georgia. Mathew says he was able to talk with his son, Chris, who sounded surprisingly relaxed. The Peace Corps said Friday that its 38 volunteers and 47 volunteers-in-training in Georgia are safe. The volunteers were prepared to leave if the fighting worsened. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: KXMB. "Russiageorgia Unrest Worries Fargo Parents" August 9, 2008.


2008: RPCV Georgia to Sakartvelo writes:volunteers were consolidated in the ski town of Bakuriani awaiting evacuation to Armenia

The volunteers are consolidated in this ski town called Bakuriani awaiting evacuation to Armenia. There was a hospital being built in Gori over the past 2 years and the rumor going around was that it was going to be used for the upcoming war in South Ossetia.. and everyone thought it was just a crazy rumor! Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Personal Web site. "Saturday, August 09, 2008" August 9, 2008.


2008: Two University of Colorado alumni in Georgia as Peace Corps volunteers have been evacuated from the village they were working in as Russians bombed the area

Julian Katchinoff and his wife, Martha Wawro, were undergraduate students in CU's geography and international affairs program. They wanted to get some experience before returning to graduate school, so they signed up for the Peace Corps, said Elizabeth Dunn, associate professor of geography and international affairs. "This is pure unadulterated aggression on the part of Russia," Dunn said. "This is the most significant act of aggression on the part of Russia since the invasion of Afghanistan in 1979." Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Denver Post. "Cu Alums In Peace Corps Unscathed" August 9, 2008.


2008: PCV B & C Go To Georgia writes: things seem to be getting worse rather than better

"They are taking us to Bakuriani so all the volunteers will be together again. They are adopting a "wait and see what Russia does" approach. If Russia stops bombing, we might go back to our sites on Sunday or Monday. If they don't, we might evacuate to Armenia. This does mean I probably won't have Internet access for a while, and although I will have cell phone coverage (albeit spotty) for the next few days, we probably won't have cell phone coverage if we do go to Armenia (I's using a lot of modifiers because nothing is really sure yet). They do have a safe location for us already in Armenia, though, which is good." Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Personal Web site. "Georgia Update" August 9, 2008.


2008: Peace Corps Volunteers in Georgia Safely Relocated to Armenia

The decision to relocate the Volunteers is due to the ongoing conflict taking place in the South Ossetia region of Georgia and bordering areas. All 36 Peace Corps Volunteers and 49 Peace Corps Volunteer-trainees serving in Georgia are safe. Personnel from Peace Corps/Georgia, as well as Peace Corps/Armenia, are now supporting the Volunteers. The Peace Corps/Georgia office is still open in Tbilisi, and is constantly and carefully monitoring this situation along with Peace Corps Headquarters in Washington. Peace Corps Volunteers do not serve in South Ossetia, the separatist region located in the north of Georgia along its border with Russia. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: Peace Corps Press Release. "Peace Corps Volunteers In Georgia Safely Relocated To Armenia" August 11, 2008.


2008: RPCV Lee Allen flees fierce Georgia fighting

Allen is a Mobile native who moved to the former Soviet nation for a Peace Corps assignment more than two years ago. He had been living in Gori, an area south of the main conflict zone that was bombed by Russian forces. "Many people have been killed there, and the city is in flames," he wrote in an e-mail received Saturday. His wife, Tiko, a native of the Georgia republic, tried to visit Gori to plead with her mother and brother to leave, but a bombing along the road to Gori kept her in Tbilisi, the Georgia capital. "Exactly an hour later - the time she would have been arriving - several Russian warplanes violated Georgian airspace again, and are continuing as I write. Gori was hit by a bomb. No one was hurt in that incident, but the hospital there is filled with wounded from the conflict," Allen wrote. In an e-mail to The Times received Sunday, Allen said he feels safe hiding in Tbilisi. He expressed hope of returning to Gori to take pictures of Saturday's attacks and secure his property. PCOL Comment: Although the news story states that Lee Allen is a Peace Corps volunteer, the Peace Corps Press Office has informed us that Allen is an RPCV who completed his service in 2007 and stayed on in Georgia on his own. Click this link to read more.

  • Original Source: The Huntsville Times. "City Man Fears For Kin In War Zone" August 11, 2008.


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