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Opposition Lawmaker Beaten Up ? MP Says

An opposition lawmaker, Gia Tsagareishvili, was beaten up by lawmakers from the ruling party on September 18, opposition MP Koka Guntsadze said.

Guntsadze told Imedi TV and the Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB) that two lawmakers from the ruling National Movement party, Vakhtang Balavadze and Koba Dvalishvili had ?settled scores? with Tsagareishvili.

Tsagareishvili told reporters on September 14 that ?all male lawmakers from the ruling party are dishonest.?

Guntsadze said an MP from the ruling party, Vakhtang Balavadze, phoned Tsagareishvili and requested a meeting.

?Tsagareishvili agreed and the two were later joined by another lawmaker from the ruling party, Koba Dvalishvili, and a third, as yet, unidentified person,? Guntsadze said. ?Then these three people started to settle scores with Gia [Tsagareishvili] by physically assaulting him.?

The GPB reported that Tsagareishvili had slight injuries to his head.

Guntsadze and Tsagareishvili are both affiliated with ex-defense minister Irakli Okruashvili?s planned political party.

?This incident demonstrates that the authorities are trying to terrorize opposition lawmakers,? Guntsadze said.

Balavadze, one of those alleged to have been involved in the incident, has confirmed, but downplayed, the incident, saying it was ?a minor scuffle.?

?I met with Gia and this meeting was about his recent remarks,? Balavadze told Imedi TV. ?We talked and he acknowledged that he had made politically incorrect statements and even apologized and then I left.? 

?After I left, Koba Dvalishvili approached Gia Tsagareishvili and started to talk with him,? Balavadze continued. ?As far as I know, during this conversation, Gia [Tsagareishvili] verbally insulted Koba Dvalishvili, which resulted in a minor scuffle for less than a minute.?

Dvalishvili has admitted assaulting Tsagareishvili, but says he was ?provoked.? 

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)


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