Georgian police have stormed the principle workplace of the opposition United National Movement (UNM) and detained its chief Nikanor (Nika) Melia. The politician is being accused of inciting riots within the capital two years in the past.
A crowd of supporters tried to stop Melia’s arrest on Tuesday. The officers broke into the UNM’s workplace within the nation’s capital Tbilisi and seized him.
Overall, 21 folks have been detained in clashes with police, the First Channel TV station reported, citing the Interior Ministry. The nation’s jail service confirmed to the channel that Melia has been taken into custody.
UNM was based by Mikheil Saakashvili who seized energy in 2003 because of the so-called Rose Revolution. He was elected president the following 12 months and dominated Georgia till 2013. Saakashvili left the nation shortly afterwards, and a number of other legal circumstances have been launched towards him. UNM misplaced energy in 2012.
Under Saakashvili’s rule, Georgia attacked the breakaway area of South Ossetia in 2008, triggering a warfare with Russia.
Melia is being accused of incitement to violence in the course of the June 2019 riots in Tbilisi. He was initially launched on bail, however later violated the bail situations by publicly taking off his ankle monitor final 12 months. The politician argues that the prosecution towards him is unfair.
A brand new bail of 40,000 Georgian lari ($12,000) was set, however Melia refused to pay it. MPs then voted to revoke Melia’s parliamentary immunity on February 17, and a courtroom ordered for him to be detained the following day.
Newly-appointed Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili stated that each one residents should comply with the regulation, no matter political affiliation. The UNM, in the meantime, is holding a protest rally outdoors the principle authorities constructing in a while Tuesday, demanding for Melia to be launched.
Melia’s case has led to a full-blown political disaster. Garibashvili’s predecessor Giorgi Gakharia resigned as PM on February 18, expressing hope that the move would ease tensions within the nation.
The 2019 riots have been sparked by the go to of Sergey Gavrilov, a Russian MP from the Communist Party, to Tbilisi. The opposition was enraged that Gavrilov, who was taking part in a religious-themed assembly held in Georgia’s parliament constructing, was sitting in a chair reserved by protocol for the speaker of the parliament.
Moscow responded to the riots by banning Russian airways from transporting Russian residents to Georgia.
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