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LGBT participate in elections

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, September 18
For the first time in the history of Georgia’s local elections, an LGBT activist and human rights lawyer will run for the elections. Nino Bolkvadze was named among the top ten in theproportional listof the Republican Party.

In an exclusive interview with Liberali newspaper, Bolkvadze said that despite the efforts of several organizations to support LGBT rights, there is little progress in this field.

In addition to advocating the LGBT rights, Bolkvadze says her primary concerns arethe issues of safety and environment.

“The air we breathe… bullying in schools… psychological health, management of harmful attitudes, domestic violence, hate crimes’, she told Liberali.

The member of the Republicans, Tamar Kordzaia stated that by naming Bolkvadze for Tbilisi City Council member, the party has started the struggle with all those institutions, which are based on oppression and inequality.

“Nino is a competent person and is capable to do a lot for people in various fields. Why should we talk about her sexual identity when she can talk about a lot of important topics… she will play an important role in the fight against inequality,” Kordzaia said.

Bolkvadze takes the seventh place in the proportional list of the Republican Party, who were formerly in alliance with the ruling Georgian Dream.

The Republicans left the alliance in 2016. The former head of the party, Davit Usupashvili, chaired Georgia’s parliament in 2012–2016 and afterwards, formed Movement for building.

A former Christian Orthodoxmonk, who served at the Monastery of Iviron on Mount Athos in northern Greece, is also among the top 10 Republican candidates.

Local elections in Georgia are scheduled for October 21.