Home / Tag Archives: Drug Policy

Tag Archives: Drug Policy

Interior Minister Reports on Drug Raids, Police Reform

On May 18, Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia reported to the Parliament at the request of the European Georgia minority group, focusing on May 13 drug raids on Tbilisi’s top music clubs, as well as on reforms planned in the Ministry. In his 40-minute statement Minister Gakharia stressed the necessity of …

Read More »

Not the final countdown

by Jaba Devdariani. For decades now, socially and politically active Georgians have been waiting – even hoping – for the apocalypse. For the country to go forward, its morbid addiction to the final showdown must end. Ever since the Soviet troops have massacred and gassed pro-independence supporters here on 9 …

Read More »

Police Probe into Neo-Nazi Activists’ Calls for Violence

The Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs has launched an investigation into calls for violence by the Georgian National Unity, a Tbilisi-based group that positions itself as a “fascist” and “right wing national-socialist” organization. The police announcement follows the May 13 remarks of Giorgi Chelidze, the leader of the organization, voiced …

Read More »

Before the music stops

by William Dunbar On Friday night of 11 to 12 May, hundreds of riot police descended on two of Tbilisi’s most famous nightclubs. Brandishing machine guns and dressed in paramilitary regalia, the police terrorized the clubbers at Café Gallery and Bassiani, dragging dozens of revelers off the dance floor and …

Read More »

Photo story: Rally ends, after tense standoff

Things got tense following the day of peaceful protest of thousands of mostly young people protesting the police crackdown on their favorite music clubs. Nationalist hardliners, mobilized through social media have gathered on a counter-rally, decrying what they saw as anti-Georgian and decadent conduct of their opponents. They have voiced …

Read More »

Interior Minister Meets Members of White Noise Movement

Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia and leaders of the White Noise movement agreed at their meeting earlier today to set up two working groups – one on the drug policy reform and another on scrutinizing the May 12 raid on Tbilisi’s top music clubs. Davit Subeliani, one of the leaders of …

Read More »

President Margvelashvili on Protests in Tbilisi

The government’s drug policy should be “much more liberal,” and the police should be “dealing with drug traffickers” rather than users and petty dealers, President Giorgi Margvelashvili said today, just hours after two opposing rallies faced off in the center of Tbilisi. “In the last few days, we witnessed a …

Read More »

Protesters Clear Rustaveli Avenue after Talks with Interior Minister

Several hundred protesters, who rallied against police raids on Tbilisi’s top music clubs, have cleared the Rustaveli avenue after nearly six hour-long standoff with a group of hardline nationalists and conservatives. The rally, convened in front of the Parliament building at 3 pm yesterday, proceeded peacefully in the initial hours, …

Read More »

Patriarchate Weighs in on Tbilisi Protests

The Georgian Orthodox Patriarchate has issued a statement on Tbilisi protests. “Our compatriots have been appalled by recent developments in Tbilisi. Although countering drug trade is essential for us, the government and the entire population, questions have been raised on the police operation in certain segments of the society (although, …

Read More »

Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili on Tbilisi Protests

Below is a statement of the Prime Minister of Georgia, Giorgi Kvirikashvili, issued at 9 pm Tbilisi time. “I would like to comment on the developments in Tbilisi over the last two days. Yesterday and from today morning we have been having active discussions in the team on what has …

Read More »

Two Demonstrations Underway in Tbilisi

Tense standoff on Rustaveli avenue, as hard-line nationalists and conservatives rally against the crowd that has gathered in front of the old Parliament building to protest police raids on Tbilisi’s top music clubs. The counter-rally participants reportedly chant violent slogans against what they see as “drug use promotion” and “anti-Georgian” …

Read More »

In Quotes: Georgian Politicians on Drug Raid in Tbilisi

Police officers raided two leading Tbilisi-based clubs Bassiani and Cafe Gallery in the early hours of May 12, allegedly following the leads regarding the dealing and use of club drugs. The move, as well as the police’s heavy handed tactics, caused outcry among rights groups and opposition parties, with thousands …

Read More »

Government Under Fire over Tbilisi Drug Raid

Drug raids in two leading clubs in Tbilisi in the early hours of 12 May and the police’s heavy handed tactics, caused outcry among rights groups and drug policy activists, prompting calls for resignation of Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili and Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia. The White Noise Movement, one one …

Read More »

Police Raids Two Night Clubs, Arrests Eight

Police officers raided two leading Tbilisi-based clubs Bassiani and Cafe Gallery, allegedly following the leads regarding the dealing and use of club drugs. The police entered the night clubs at around 1 am today, with video footage from the scene showing armed officers moving into the premises to conduct drug …

Read More »

Wave of Drug-related Deaths Reignites Drug Policy Debate

A wave of drug-related deaths over the past two weeks has reignited the nearly year-long debate on Georgia’s drug policy reform, pitting conservative politicians with activists advocating more liberal drug policy. So far, the government dithers, but is leaning towards the hard line. In recent weeks, at least five young …

Read More »

Media, NGOs Demand Drug Policy Liberalization

The National Drug Policy Platform, which unites 41 non-governmental organizations, released a statement on March 27, calling on the Parliament to support the CSO-drafted legislative proposal, which envisages decriminalization of drug use and introduces rehabilitation programs for drug addicts. The statement comes a day after several dozen media representatives held a …

Read More »