Gerard Depardieu Under Fire For Meeting With Georgian Separatists

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July 3, 2013 | 5:55pm EST

French actor Gerard Depardieu has been accused of breaking the law in Georgia after allegedly meeting with rebel leaders in the disputed territory of Abkhazia.
The Green Card star, who became a Russian citizen last year, is reported to have traveled to the conflict zone without warning Georgian authorities this week – a move which warrants the actor’s arrest.
Travel in the region was restricted after leaders of the separatist state declared themselves independent following the 1992-1993 War in Abkhazia, where Georgian military forces were defeated, but the only international power which recognizes its new status is Russia after officials waged a five-day war with Georgia over the land in 2008.
However, local Georgian politician Ketevan Tsikhelashvili insists he is not looking to take Depardieu into custody over the banned trip as the star is likely unaware of the full conflict situation.
He tells Reuters, “We think he does not know what’s going on in Abkhazia.”
Depardieu is no stranger to controversy – he famously quit his native France in December in a reported bid to avoid a tax hike on wealthy residents, and was subsequently welcomed to settle in Russia by President Vladimir Putin.