Dep. Interior Minister on Communication between Diplomats and MIA on June 20

Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs of Georgia Nino Javakhadze responded to the statement made by Minister Giorgi Gakhraia Thursday. Gakharia said that he was together with the ambassadors of several countries in Parliament on June 20. According to him, he watched the developments with them, when the riot police hit back at the anti-occupation demonstration in front of the Parliament building on central Rustaveli Avenue.

His statement was negatively appraised by much of society, who see it as a shirking of responsibility for the attack on protestors when he claims "he did not make the relevant decision(s) without informing the international diplomats."

Javakhadze said the German Ambassador was definitely in Parliament on June 20, while other ambassadors were in touch with the Ministry throughout the night.

"If you remember that night, the German Ambassador made a statement from Parliament, arriving there after the situation escalated. The remainder of ambassadors were in touch with us and were watching the developments all night long,” she said.

When journalists asked why Gakharia stated that he was in Parliament with foreign ambassadors on June 20, Javakhadze answered that "there is an opportunity to interpret" and reaffirmed that the German Ambassador was present.

The protests sparked in Georgia’s capital of Tbilisi on June 20 after Russian MP Sergei Gavrilov addressed the participants of the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy being held in the Parliament of Georgia from the Speaker’s chair, speaking in Russian.

The riot police used rubber bullets and tear gas against the participants of the demonstration on June 20, after some of the protestors tried to forcefully enter the Parliament building. Two non-violent young demonstrators lost an eye each, while a total of 240 people, including 80 police officers, were hospitalized. 

Since June 20, peaceful demonstrations have been held every day in Georgia's capital Tbilisi. The protestors have one demand yet to be fulfilled: the resignation of Minister Gakharia for excessive use of force and violating the rights of peaceful protestors during the rally. 

The Minister has said he does not intend to resign.

By Ana Dumbadze 

12 July 2019 17:34