Irakli Kobakhidze, ruling Georgian Dream party chairperson, said today “there is reasonable suspicion” that Elene Khoshtaria of the Droa political movement, as well as anti-occupation Shame Movement activists Shota Dighmelashvili and Giga Makarashvili, are “Russia’s agents.”
MP Kobakhidze said the suspicions stem from the fact that the activists were the first to have information regarding the Tbilisi visit of Russian-American journalist Vladimir Pozner, known in Georgia for his controversial remarks about the country’s territorial integrity.
Pozner, who sought to celebrate his birthday in Georgia, left Tbilisi this morning after facing a night-long protest. The Georgian Dream government came under fire from street protestors and social media users for allowing a “Kremlin propagandist” to enter the country.
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Denying the allegation, Elene Khoshtaria said she was aware of Pozner’s visit ahead of his arrival through the circle of Georgians that hosted the Russian-American journalist in Tbilisi. Khoshtaria said she did not reveal the names of Pozner’s hosts as it was never her goal to publicly condemn them, but to inform the government that the journalist’s visit would turn problematic.
“Viewers see well that if the Georgian Dream does not like something [public protests], it pins the blame on the other side,” remarked Giga Makarashvili, adding that the ruling party is known for slandering activists.
“I do not know what reaction I should have, I should probably sue […] for him [Kobakhidze] to be held accountable for these words,” Shota Dighmelashvili stated.