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UNM boycotts Parliament activities

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Tuesday, June 7
The United National Movement (UNM) opposition party is continuing its boycott of parliamentary activities until all the participants of May 22 by-election clash are sent to prison.

One of the leaders of UNM, Mikheil Matchavariani, demands a comprehensive investigation of the incident, which left the supporters of opposing political parties - UNM leaders among them - beaten up in the village of Kortskheli in the Zugdidi Municipality, where a local council by-election was held.

Law enforcers have charged six athletees over the incident, while the Ministry of Defence discharged a soldier from Georgia’s Armed Forces for his participation in the clash. The soldier was a world champion in Mixed Martial Arts.

“Charging only six individuals is not enough. We want every single of them to be punished. Herewith, the investigation must find out who stands behind this incident so that they are also punished,” stated Matchavariani.

In Zudidi, supporters of the ruling Georgian Dream Democratic Georgia (GDDG) and opposition UNM parties fought with each other.

UNM claims the clash was staged by the Government and was organised by Minister of Energy Kakhi Kaladze.

“It was Kaladze’s idea to create such groups in different regions of country. If all this will not be investigated, we will face a similar situation during the parliamentary elections in October,” said Matchavariani.

Matchavariani repeated several times the instigator of the clash must answer for his/her action.

Meanwhile, members of the GDDG, Kaladze among them, say the UNM stood behind the clash as they wished to display that the current authorities were unable to hold peaceful elections.

Law-enforcement bodies claim the investigation is still in progress. The Ministry of Justice, at the behest of the Prime Minister is working on amendments that will make election violations strictly punishable.