Riot police detaining protesters near parliament building in Tbilisi

TBILISI: Riot police have begun to detain demonstrators protesting against the foreign agent bill near the parliament building in downtown T...


TBILISI: Riot police have begun to detain demonstrators protesting against the foreign agent bill near the parliament building in downtown Tbilisi, a TASS correspondent reported from the scene.

The situation has stabilized. Several dozens of protesters are still staying in front of the parliament building while the police have been deployed to surrounding streets.

Several thousand people on Wednesday evening gathered for a protest rally outside the parliament building. At a certain point, the rally turned into clashes with the police. Some of the demonstrators approached the staff only entrance to the parliament on April 9 Street and began to swing the gates. The riot police in the building’s courtyard responded with tear gas and pepper gas and water jets. Stones, bottles and firecrackers were hurled at the police.

On May 1, the Georgian parliament after the second reading supported the bill On the Transparency of Foreign Influence, which Zourabichvili, the opposition and Western diplomats oppose as an an obstacle to the country’s integration into the European Union. The opposition and civil activists have been holding rallies against the bill in Tbilisi since April 15.

The ruling Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia party announced in early April that it had decided to reintroduce the bill to parliament. This happened a year after a similar initiative triggered mass protests, forcing the authorities to abandon the bill. Its text remains identical to last year’s, except for the term "agent of foreign influence." Instead, the term "organization promoting the interests of a foreign power" is used.


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Local Glob: Riot police detaining protesters near parliament building in Tbilisi
Riot police detaining protesters near parliament building in Tbilisi
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