Election runoff: Police investigate clash in Gori

The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia released the crime statistics for the January-October 2015 period. Photo by Ministry of Internal Affairs.
Agenda.ge, 30 Oct 2016 - 15:56, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs is investigating a physical confrontation that erupted between opposing political supporters in Kvemo Sodisi village in Gori district, central Georgia today.

The Ministry said an investigation had launched regarding assault causing physical pain of the victim but did not cause any health damage.

The incident took place between activists of ruling Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia (GDDG) party and opposition United National Movement (UNM) party. In the clash UNM activist Albert Merebashvili was physically assaulted.

Police said Merebashvili’s father was detained after the incident as he allegedly verbally assaulted members of the election commission of #45 election station.

UNM said in a statement that Merebashvili was assaulted by a member of Gori’s Sakrebulo (local council) along with several other GDDG supporters.

Meanwhile GDDG Executive Secretary Irakli Kobakhidze said UNM supporters intentionally provoked the incident.

Merebashvili went to #45 election station and he tried to provoke our activists. He started verbally abusing them and I stress that he was the first one who engaged in a physical violence,” Kobakhidze said.
He hit one of our activists, which was followed by a clash.”

Kobakhidze said he had information that UNM was planning this type of provocation in other towns and he asked GDDG supporters to be careful and responsible.

"Our task is to hold the elections in a calm and peaceful environment and I once again call on our supporters to do their best to avoid such provocations,” Kobakhidze said.