Clashes in Pankisi between Locals and Police

Residents of the Pankisi Gorge region were protesting the construction of a hydropower plant today when the situation became exacerbated. Clashes broke out, seeing protestors throw stones at police, who in turn used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd. Several locals were injured and some police officers are also reported wounded. The situation is very tense and Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia went to Pankisi to start negotiations. He offered to hold talks with several community representatives and promised to suspend construction until the end of negotiations.

Locals are opposing the Khadori-3 hydropower plant, claiming that it will damage the environment of the mountainous region. A few days ago, representatives of the Georgian government visited Pankisi and said that they would address the complaints but the construction work started anyway. Other protests have occurred in the region and Tbilisi opposing the project.

 

By Gabrielle Colchen

Photo Source: South China Morning Post

21 April 2019 18:06
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