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Gamkrelidze Concedes Defeat, Calls for Run-Off

Davit Gamkrelidze, a presidential candidate and leader of the New Rights Party, has conceded defeat, but has called for a run-off between Mikheil Saakashvili and Levan Gachechiladze.

“Yesterday’s election means there should be a second round of polls,” Gamkrelidze said at a news conference on January 6. “I want to congratulate Mr. Levan Gachechiladze on his success in the first round.”
“I want to call on Mikheil Saakashvili, if he really has a sense of responsibility towards the Georgian state, to say no to a first round artificial victory and agree to a second round. That is the only solution to the current situation.”

Although his party will not join a protest rally planned by the nine-party opposition coalition on January 6, he warned that he would, if the authorities continued attempting to manipulate the election results, “announce that he is an illegitimate president and we will use all peaceful means of political struggle.”

He also called on the U.S. ambassador in Georgia, John Tefft; the EU special representative to the South Caucasus, Peter Semneby; and the head of the OSCE/ODIHR long-term election observation mission, Dieter Boden, not to endorse the “falsified” election results.


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