Tuesday, August 19, 2008

(Apartment buildings in City of Gori after
Russian air strike on August 10.)

Gay Georgian Leader's Photos from Gori War Zone

I haven't received any word recently from Paata Sabelashvili, the leader of the Inclusive Foundation, Georgia's only gay advocacy organization, who is also a photographer, but through Googling, I know that he's been in the Gori region and was mentioned on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs official timeline of the war. As soon as I hear from Paata himself, or hear from one of his colleagues, I'll share the update here.

Over at Artmika's GayArmenian blog, he shares some cyberattack news being perpetrated by the Russians, alleging the Georgian president is a homosexual:

Over the last few days my mailbox’s ‘spam folder’ caught number of ‘gay Saakashvili’ messages (referring to Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili). Obviously, I did not open them expecting that this could be a kind of fishy, computer virus spreading spam. Today gay.ru posted news by Security Lab which provides details of that spam attack.

"Mikheil Saakashvili gay scandal! New of this week!" messages contain a reference to the fake BBC news link. It re-directs to the site which starts downloading a malicious code into the user's computer. Experts note the size and technical execution of this spam attack ... There were 44 identified computer sources of that spam indicating the formation of a new botnet.

This is from the Georgian foreign ministry's web site:

13 August

14:45 Paata Sabelashvili, photographer, reported from highway nearby Gori that mini-bus with Georgian civilians have been robbed by Ossetian separatists, one of the passengers, 25-year old women has been kidnapped by the attackers.

Last week, Paata had a dozen of his photos posted on the Civil.ge web site, which describes itself thus:

Civil Georgia is a daily news online service devoted to delivering quality news and analysis about Georgia. Civil.Ge is run by The UN Association of Georgia, a Georgian non-governmental organization, in frames of ‘National Integration and Tolerance in Georgia’ Program financed by USAID. Civil Georgia is also supported by Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, German Foundation and Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.
Here are more of Paata's front-line photos from the Civil.ge site:

Apartment buildings in City of Gori after Russian
air strike on August 10, 2008

Internally Displaced Persons in Mtskheta
Reception Center near Tbilisi, August 12

Georgian President Mr. Mikheil Saakashvili
in city of Gori, August 11

Russian troops close to city of Gori, August 13

Dear Paata, take care of yourself and please find a small degree of comfort knowing that my friends and I stand in solidarity with you, and we're very concerned for your safety and the security of all Georgians.

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