Acquitted photographer says opposition presidential candidate wants to pardon his torturers

Giorgi Abdaladze says that he was tortured by the previous state officials to give a false testimony in 2011. Photo: Aleko Sharvadze., 23 Nov 2018 - 14:40, Tbilisi,Georgia

Photographer Giorgi Abdaladze, who was found innocent by Tbilisi Court of Appeals yesterday for a case which took place under the previous United National Movement (UNM)  government, says that the UNM presidential candidate, former Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze, intends to pardon those who tortured him back in 2011.

Abdaladze also says that Vashadze is lying when he says that he does not know the photographers, as in 2011 when four photographers were detained for spying for Russia, Vashadze served as foreign minister.

We were found guilty of stealing classified information from the Foreign Ministry. Vashadze was even responsible to know about our case,” Abdaladze said.

Vashadze claims that when he becomes the president he will pardon the former officials who were sent to prison by the current Georgian Dream leadership.

Tbilisi Court of Appeals delivered a verdict yesterday acquitting four photographers convicted in 2011 under the United National Movement leadership for spying for Russia. The court said the real reason for the arrest were photos they took depicting the dispersal of a peaceful rally by the UNM authorities in central Tbilisi on 26 May 2011.

The court also said that the testimonies the photographers submitted in writing had been made after they were tortured and pressured into doing so.