Media Review of Georgia:Demands for resignation of Saakashvili still sound, but the elite is beginning to consolidate

Mon, 21/01/2013 - 16:52

In neighboring Georgia are still being discussed the results of the recent amnesty declared by the Parliament, which even had had to overcome a veto of President Saakashvili.
By analogy with the amnesty of criminals in the USSR in 1953, Georgia's data-analytical portal "Georgia Online" on January 14, 2013 issued an article entitled "Cold January of 2013." A prominent Georgian analyst Leila Naroushvili has written in the article: "On Sunday, January 13 all 190 so-called political prisoners were released. So called -because the status of a "political prisoner" approved by the deputies representing the parliamentary majority is a very controversial and it has provoked radically opposite views in the society.

On the one hand, this was due to the fact that the Commission to study and compile the lists of so-called political prisoners led by the Chairman of the Committee on Human Rights Eka Beselia, somehow hastened by making a list and status of the prisoners. In addition, many of the comments were ignored. On the other hand, some non-governmental organizationsm such as the Union of Young Lawyers of Georgia and "Article 42 of the Constitution" left the working group due to labor disputes. As the Chairman of the Union of Young Lawyers Chugoshvili Tamar has said, the study of cases of the prisoners to be included in the list, was superficial, careless, there was only a list without the accompanying letters. The Union of Young Lawyers and "Article 42 of the Constitution" took responsibility only for those 55 prisoners whose cases had been examined in detail and annexed a qualified legal opinion. According to Chugoshvili, in all 55 cases were clearly observed political reasons and so they decided to classify them as political prisoners. "
The author comes to the far-reaching implications, "May 7, 1920 Democratic Georgia signed an agreement with Soviet Russia. The tenth paragraph of the agreement obliged Georgia to release all prisoners in the Democratic Republic of Georgia who had acted for the benefit of the Russian Communist Party, in other words, had been engaged in espionage. For the sake of Russia's recognition of Georgia's independence, the then Georgian democratic government was forced to release from prisons all spies, that is, in modern terms, the political prisoners, who carried out the orders of the Bolshevik-Communist Russia. After several months just they took part in the occupation and annexation of the Georgian Democratic Republic by the Russian workers and peasants' army. "
After the parliamentary elections in Georgia, Georgian media indicated their attitude towards the changes in the political landscape. Some of them now express the views of the parliament and government, and the others - the point of view of the president. Although it is hard to avoid filtering on the actual issues "Georgia Online" continues to show loyalty to the disgraced president, whose badly depleted team is trying to beat the public sentiment in its favor in anticipation of this year's presidential election and to obtain the victory of its candidate. Taking into account that Saakashvili cannot longer be a candidate (as he is the second term in office), this task becomes very difficult. So, it remains only to intimidate the ordinary citizens (voters) by some phantom Russian threat, spread by the Saakashvili propaganda.
Such intimidation by president's team is used as a "last straw" in a growing dissatisfaction of the Georgian people, who cannot wait Saakashvili to resign his office.
This is evidenced by a mass rally in Tbilisi, January 20, 2013, which is described in the same publication in the article "At the residence of the President of Georgia was held the action to demand his resignation," on January 20, 2013.
"At the President's Palace in Tbilisi, has started a meeting of the opponents of Mikheil Saakashvili. The meeting organized by the association "Unanimity" gathered 500 people. Participants of the action, including many famous people of the former Soviet Union, publicly announced the completion of the constitutional term of office of President Mikheil Saakashvili. According to them, if President Saakashvili stays in his post, it will cause disturbance, for which will be responsible those who agree with this. They have stated that Saakashvili's term in office since his election expires on January 21 and, therefore, from this day he is no longer a president. In addition, the protesters demand the Parliament of Georgia to initiate the process of impeachment of Saakashvili. The actions of "Unanimity" will take a permanent nature."
Saakashvili himself is on a visit to the UAE, and then he will depart for the winter session of PACE in Strasbourg and will return home on January, 21. It is interesting, whether his high-ranking counterparts will ask him, what the president he is, if the people are protesting against him and calls for his resignation?
At the same time, it should be noted that the situation of internal strife in Georgia is not so critical. The old and the new teams seem to have found common interests and will not bother each other by litigation. Moreover, the team of Ivanishvili has a number of experienced politicians who previously have been in very close political relations with Saakashvili. Now Georgia has new political elite, and for its peace of mind, they even decided to close eyes to the case of Zhvania. Even the "Iron Irakly" was forced once again to change his testimony.
"Ex-Defense Minister Irakly Okruashvili said that former Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania had been killed and the details of the case would be announced soon by the public prosecutor`s office. Okruashvili said that he had already spoken with the public prosecutor on the case of Zhvania and the coming days he would testify. "It was not a murder. Today, I cannot say anything more. I will have to give evidence on the subject, but today I will refrain. Soon the case will be announced the solved," - said Okruashvili "- in the article" The former Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania was not killed - Okruashvili" in "Georgia Online" on January 18, 2013.
Accordingly, Okruashvili has been dropped of all charges. "The Tbilisi City Court found the former Defense Minister Irakly Okruashvili and seven others not guilty of forming an illegal armed group and dropped all charges against them. As the Lawyer of Okruashvili Zviad Kordzadze- has told the reporters in court- his client described in detail the period when had been going to return to Georgia. "Okruashvili has managed to convince the court that he was not intending to form the armed group," - he said. According to Kordzadze, after completion of the trial the prosecutor requested a break, after which the court requested to drop charges against Okruashvili and others. Thus, they were discharged. Prior to that Okruashvili had been dropped two more charges - money laundering and misappropriation of shares in "Dzheosel." As for accusations of abuse of power, the process of the case is scheduled for January 24. His lawyer hopes that he will be discharged." This is written by the Georgian news agency "The Caucasus Data Portal," on January 19, 2013.
A spouse of ex-Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia Badri Bitsadze, who was on the run, has also returned to Georgia.
"The former head of the Georgian Border Police, the husband of the leader of "Democratic Movement" Nino Burjanadze, Badri Bitsadze has returned to Georgia.
As reported to "InterpressNews" by the assistant of Nino Burjanadze, Badri Bitsadze had arrived in Tbilisi at dawn from Munich. Earlier, the former head of the Border Police Badri Bitsadze was given the status of politically persecuted person by the Parliament of Georgia. Subsequently, he was amnestied by the Tbilisi City Court. Badri Bitsadze left Georgia after the events of May 26, 2011. A spouse of the leader of "Democratic Movement" Nino Burjanadze was accused of organization of resisting police. He was indicted in absentia"- writes the same edition in the article" Badri Bitsadze returned to Georgia," January 19, 2013.
Against this background, the Catholicos-Patriarch of Georgia Ilia II went to Moscow. The formal reason for the visit is named for the award. January 21 in the Russian capital will be held the 13th award ceremony named after Patriarch Alexy II, which will be awarded to the Georgian Patriarch Ilia II for strengthening the unity of the Georgian and Russian peoples. The Patriarch Alexy II award was established by the international Foundation for the Unity of Orthodox Christian Nations. According to the Russian media, along with Ilia II this award will also be granted to the Lebanese President Michel Suleiman and to the Chairman of the St. Andrew Board of Trustees, President of public corporation "Russian Railways" Vladimir Yakunin.
"" In Moscow will be discussed the actual issues,"- declared the Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia, His Holiness and Beatitude Ilia II during his sermon at the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity after the solemn service on the occasion of Epiphany. In this case, the patriarch appealed to the parishioners to pray to Our Lady for Georgia,"- is written in "Georgia Online" on January 19, 2013 in the article " Elijah II - In Moscow will be discussed the actual issues." Some media highlighted the upcoming Wednesday meeting of Ilia II and the Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Thus, Georgia is again displaying the signs of consolidation and activity towards Russia's foreign policy. And that means that we also need to work actively to improve our image.

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