On October 12, Georgian Young Lawyer’s Association (GYLA), a local watchdog, released a second interim report on the October 31 parliamentary elections, identifying violations and malpractices such as one case of alleged vote-buying, 11 cases of threats and violence, one case of alleged ignoring the requirement to separate the state and political parties and three cases of possible obstruction of election campaigns.
The report, based on monitoring conducted by GYLA’s long-term observation mission during September, includes violations and negative practices perpetrated by both, the ruling party and the opposition.
Violent incidents and political pressure were the key highlights in the report, such as alleged pressure by the ruling Georgian Dream party on Lelo for Georgia activists; an attack on a Lelo activist; a confrontation in Zugdidi during a Lelo presentation; an alleged attack on Strategy Aghmashenebeli activists in Tbilisi; alleged political pressure by GD members of Zugdidi Municipal Assembly (Sakrebulo) on a Lelo member; an alleged attack on Labor party activists; an alleged raid on United National Movement office in Tbilisi’s Samgori district; alleged attacks on two UNM activists; brawls in southern Bolnisi and Marneuli municipalities between UNM and GD activists and an alleged stone-throwing incident in Gldani district against UNM majoritarian candidate Nika Melia.
The watchdog identified one case of alleged vote-buying in favor of the UNM-led bloc member Progress and Freedom party. According to the report, party founder Kakha Okriashvili’s pharma company PSP aired an advertisement claiming to be importing medications from Turkey without any markup.
The watchdog assessed Prime Minister’s advisor Beka Liluashvili’s comments on the involvement of Bidzina Ivanishvili’s Cartu Foundation in the state project Log-in Georgia as a possible ignoring of the requirement to separate the state and political parties.
According to the report, election campaigns of Lelo and United Georgia-Democratic Movement were reportedly obstructed on two occasions. Some municipal bodies also insufficiently provided the information on buildings and places where election campaign activities are allowed, the watchdog noted.
Follow our Election Live Blog for more updates on the upcoming October 31 parliamentary elections.
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- ISFED Releases First Interim Report on Pre-Election Environment