Gavrilov Demands Punishment of Georgian MPs

Russian MP Sergei Gavrilov, who was forced to leave Georgia following anger at his speech from the seat of the Georgian Parliament Speaker, believes that there is nothing unusual in the fact that he sat in Parliament Speaker’s chair, as it was in accordance with the protocol and the decision of the Georgian government.

Gavrilov has said he hopes that "all those people who attacked and threatened him in Tbilisi will be punished", and mentioned in particular Akaki Bobokhidze, MP of "European Georgia", who was said to have been especially aggressive to the Russian Delegation. 

According to Gavrilov, recent events show an attempted revolution in Georgia.

“I was invited to sit in the chair of the Parliament Speaker of Georgia by the Georgian side”, the MP of the Russian Duma said in an interview with TV channel РОССИЯ 1.

He also said that he, as the President of the Inter-Parliamentary Assembly of Orthodoxy, had rights to lead the sessions scheduled in Tbilisi. Additionally, the place for the sessions – the Parliament building, was selected by the Georgian government.

"According to our regulations and protocol, the meeting should be led by the President and the Secretary-General. We lead the session from the presidium. I had nothing against holding the session at any other place and I was ready to work even on a small chair... But the Georgians thought that it would be right to strengthen the international image of the hospitable country by hosting the delegations of 23 countries in the hall of the Parliament. I, as the President, opened the session and was leading it", he noted.

Gavrilov says that the severeity of the protest came as a surprise considering he received security guarantees from the Georgian government.

"Obviously, we were all shocked. The entire Assembly, including the African delegation, left the session hall in solidarity and we resumed working at the hotel where there was also a risk of attack. But we still held the session and, in fact, we were attacked while leaving the hotel”, he said.

Gavrilov said that the attackers were radicals and, according to their behavior, were in "inadequate condition".

The Communist MP of the Russian Duma also said that the incident damaged Georgia’s reputation most.

“Relations between us (Russia and Georgia) are being strengthened in tourism and economic sectors, and there is a desire to stop this positive development... Imagine what it means for Georgia's reputation to invite guests, guarantee their security, and then have them attacked with death threats. I think these are not traditional Georgians: these are radicals who fight to be in government through any method, including anti-Russian rhetoric and the destruction of the international image of Georgia", Gavrilov stated. 

By Ana Dumbadze 

26 June 2019 16:27