Mother spent three days trapped with son’s corpse

A South Ossetian woman has told of her horror at being trapped in a basement for three days with dead her son. Taisa Sytnik had no option but to hide in the tiny cellar with the corpse as Georgian troops bombarded the city of Tskhinvali for 72 hours.

Taisa says her son, Georgy, was killed by Georgian soldiers after he left the house to help injured victims. He was still on the doorstep when a piece of flying shrapnel claimed his life. 

But the suffering of his mother was only just beginning. For the next three days she was trapped in the dark, cramped basement – with the corpse of her son lying next to her.

A week later, still overcome with grief, she was struggling to come to terms with the horror of what had happened.

“What did you kill my son for? Georgian mothers: why did you send your children to kill my son?” she said.

He had just started a job at a Moscow dental clinic, but returned to Tskhinvali after hearing it was under attack.  He had wanted to help the injured.

When the violence subsided, neighbours helped Taisia to bury her son in their garden. Now, five days later, they are exhuming his body to give him a proper funeral.