“We will pardon abuser Melia anyway. This is our decision,” Irakli Kobakhidze, the Chairman of the Georgian Dream party, told journalists.
He noted that Melia can leave prison whenever he wants.
“We constantly hear that sometimes Melia does not want bail, sometimes he does not want amnesty. He can come out any time, but he is not doing it. Regarding bail and amnesty, in both cases, it is up to Melia to decide. He may or may not accept the amnesty law. This possibility is also reflected in the law on amnesty.
“If Melia does not agree to bail, we will pardon him anyway. This is our decision. And he may and may not enter parliament,” Kobakhidze said.
The GD Chairman added that if the opposition did not support the amnesty bill, it would be against the agreement, which was signed by both sides.
“Withdraw the amnesty bill, and in this case, I, Nika Melia, take full responsibility to agree to the bail offered by the European Union and leave prison this way,” Melia, addressed the opposition parties who signed the Charles Michel document.
Opposition parties that have signed the EU-mediated agreement with the ruling Georgian Dream party entered Parliament on April 27 to submit an amnesty bill, however, until now no agreement has been reached regarding who should be affected by amnesty.
The currently imprisoned UNM Chairman publicly asked the opposition parties “not to take part in this attempt to rewrite history, which is called amnesty for Gavrilov’s night of June 20.”
The trial of Nika Melia will be held on April 29.
Pre-trial detention was ordered for Melia on February 17. He stands accused of organizing group violence during anti-government protests in June 2019 (so-called ‘Gavrilov’s Night’). UNM leader denies the charges. He was arrested on February 23.
European Council President Charles Michel released a proposal, suggesting electoral and justice reforms and offering a pardon for all violations and convictions stemming from the 19-21 June 2019 protests.
Based on the mediators’ document, the persons assessed as political prisoners should be released within a week after the signing of the agreement between the government and the opposition.
By Ana Dumbadze