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240 Injured During Last Night’s Unrest, Health Ministry Says

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240 people, including 80 police officers have been injured, as police dispersed protesters through massive use of tear gas and rubber bullets at the Parliament building in Tbilisi.

According to Healthcare Ministry, 102 out of those injured, remain in hospitals. First Deputy Minister Zaza Bokhua said most of them suffer from bruises and eye traumas.

The police, including the riot control units have engaged small pockets of protesters that attempted to come together in various locations in central Tbilisi.

The last pockets were eliminated by 04:45 in the morning of 21 June. However, unrests in Tbilisi continued till sunrise, with some civilians reportedly staying outside on different locations even longer.

The Coalition for Media Advocacy, a platform of ten Georgian rights watchdogs released a statement on June 21, saying 12 journalists were injured at Rustaveli avenue last night. Civil.ge’s Guram Muradov is among them.

The major injuries were caused by the rubber bullets that the police used against the demonstrators. The cases of intoxication from tear gas were also reported from hospitals.

Background

A group of opposition and civic activists had gathered in front of the parliament of Georgia, condemning the Russian delegation’s presence at yesterday’s session of the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy in the parliament’s plenary chamber.

The protesters raised the responsibility of the ruling party over today’s developments, and demanded resignation of Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze, Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze, Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia and Head of the State Security Service Vakhtang Gomelauri.

Tensions mounted around 10pm Tbilisi time, as the ruling party did not respond to demands. Part of the protesters broke through the first cordon of the police, but were pushed back by the riot police.

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

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