Former house of government in Abkhazia to be turned into hotel: Why some call it sacrilege
Government house in Abkhazia
At a meeting with Abkhazian students studying in Moscow, Abkhazian President Aslan Bzhania said that there is an investor ready to invest in reconstruction of the building of the former Government House in Sukhum, which burned down at the end of the Georgian-Abkhazian war 1992-93 . According to Bzhania, it is likely to be turned into a hotel. But since for Abkhazians this building is a symbol of victory in the war, the opposition considers this idea sacrilegious.
“The building [Government House], as well as this place as a whole, is drenched in the blood of Abkhazians. And that is why a project related to military chronicles, history, culture, science, education, sports, youth policy should be begun here,”not a commercial project that brings dividends to a well-known circle of businessmen from politics,” the opposition party Forum of People’s Unity, whose informal leader is former Abkhazian President Raul Khajimba, said in a special statement.
And famous Abkhazian singer Jimi Shumenia threatened on Facebook that he would burn down the hotel if it was built.
No one disputes symbolism of the place, but there are plenty of supporters of the hypothetical hotel. Better a hotel than the waste of space it has been for thirty years, they say.
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Some bloggers are trying to reduce the heat, claiming that the idea of building a hotel has no real grounds at all and that it is just a rumor, with which the authorities want to divert attention from other, more real and urgent problems.
The current opposition leader, Adgur Ardzinba, also believes that a hotel is out of the question. According to him, reconstruction of the building was planned back in 2016 and no hotel was envisioned:
“The Abkhazian people will definitely restore this symbol of Victory in the best possible form, and in front of it we will erect a beautiful monument to Vladislav (Ardzinba, the first president of Abkhazia – JAMnews).
This will be one of the most beautiful projects in Abkhazia, and this building will serve exclusively public, popular interests. And, of course, any private property is out of the question!”
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