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Armenian and Georgian clergymen and secular officials met at the Georgian Patriarchate.

Father Tatev Marukyan, pastor of the Holy Cross Armenian Church in Akhalkalaki town in Georgia, on Thursday told Armenian News-NEWS.am that during this talk, it was decided to set up a working group, and to discuss with the Kumurdo (Gumburdo) village residents the situation regarding the church of this rural community.

The results of the discussions at the Patriarchate were presented to the villagers, and they are not against this decision.

Fr. Marukyan added, however, that the church in Kumurdo is not considered an Armenian place of Christian worship.

“We have never said this church is an [Armenian] Apostolic Church,” he noted. “It is on privatized territory and considered their [Georgians’] historical and cultural heritage.”

On September 30, clashes occurred between the Armenian residents of Kumurdo and police in Javakheti, which is a predominantly-Armenian-populated part of Georgia’s southeastern Samtskhe-Javakheti Province.

The Armenians wished to place an Armenian cross-stone in the courtyard of the local church, since the bones of their forebears are buried there. Police, however, did not let them inside the church saying they have a respective order.

The situation became tenser, and therefore special forces arrived at the scene. Police fired shots in the air, and they beat the local Armenians with clubs.

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