Georgia’s parliament approves first reading of foreign agent bill

TBILISI: The parliament of Georgia has approved the first reading of a foreign agent bill that sparked mass protests in Tbilisi. In a vote o...


TBILISI: The parliament of Georgia has approved the first reading of a foreign agent bill that sparked mass protests in Tbilisi.

In a vote on Wednesday that was held without the opposition taking part, 83 lawmakers voted for the controversial draft law, with no votes against.

Protests against the bill have been held outside the parliament building since Monday. People have been gathering near the service entrance since midday (9:00 a.m. GMT - TASS), and a large protest is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. local time (4:00 p.m. GMT - TASS) on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili has said she would veto the draft law if it was adopted in all three readings.

In early April, the ruling Georgian Dream party announced a decision to reintroduce the bill a year after the initiative had triggered mass protests, making the authorities opt against adopting it. The text of the bill is almost identical to last year’s version, with one exception: the term "agent of foreign influence" has been replaced with "entity pursuing foreign interests."

The party’s decision to reintroduce the bill caused a negative reaction from the opposition and the Georgian leader, as well as the EU and US embassies. According to opponents of the idea, the bill may hinder the country’s integration into the European Union.


-News Feed

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Local Glob: Georgia’s parliament approves first reading of foreign agent bill
Georgia’s parliament approves first reading of foreign agent bill
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