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Riot Police Remove Barricades from Parliament Area

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17:00

At 5 pm today, half an hour after the warning, Interior Ministry riot police have started to disperse the protest rally of civic activists and opposition parties in downtown Tbilisi, demanding fully proportional snap elections.

Dozens of activists and opposition supporters remained around Georgian parliament overnight, keeping to block its three entrances.

Earlier today, Interior Ministry called on the leaders of political parties and organizers of the rally “to stop blocking the Parliament building,” otherwise, police would react adequately in frames of their mandate. The ruling party representatives also called on law enforcement agencies earlier to take lawful actions.

Photo: Eana Korbazashvili/Civil.ge

17:29

Protesters, including opposition leaders, tried to resist riot police and sat down in the street to block their movement. Following a brief confrontation, police used water cannon and removed protesters from the street. Barricades were also removed from the scene.

Reportedly, police used tear gas against protesters as well. Additional units of riot police, deployed near the Opera Theater, moved from Rustaveli Avenue to the Parliament building. Riot police are approaching the Parliament building from all sides and protesters are unsuccessfully trying to stop them.

Photo: Guram Muradov/Civil.ge

Police also removed the tents placed on the road outside the Parliament building, using water cannon. While the street in front of the Parliament has been cleared, the sidewalk and stage used by protest leaders to address the supporters seems to remain intact, cordoned off by ordinary policemen.

17:55

Meanwhile, cleaning services have already started cleaning up of the territory.

Photo: Eana Korbezashvili

18:20

Riot police forced demonstrators, who were occupying the street, to move to Freedom Square.

18:47

Protest rally in front of the Parliament of Georgia resumes. Opposition parties and civic rights activists are gathering.

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

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