Interior Minister Gakharia requests to speak in parliament on Tbilisi protests

Giorgi Gakharia became Interior Minister in 2017.Photo: Interior Ministry press office., 24 Jun 2019 - 18:49, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia has requested parliament in an official letter to allow him to speak about the June 20-21 developments and rallies in Tbilisi at the parliament’s plenary session tomorrow, the Ministry of Internal Affairs says.

Gakharia has come to parliament five times this year to speak and answer legislators’ questions.

Demonstrators in Tbilisi are demanding Gakharia’s resignation due to the June 20 rally dispersal in Tbilisi, which left 240 injured and 305 detained, with two young people losing an eye due to rubber bullets.

Demonstrators are demanding Gakharia's resignation, saying police abused power during the June 20 rally. Photo: Nino Alavidze/ 

Ten law enforcers have been suspended from duty due to possible abuse of power during the June 20-21 rally in central Tbilisi, sparked by the presence of Russian MPs in Georgia, the Georgian Interior Ministry said earlier today.

The Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia also urged the public earlier today to help the investigation and provide footage which may reflect possible misuse or abuse of power by law enforcers during the demonstration.

Gakharia said that “destructive opposition forces,” which managed to transform the Georgian people’s “fair and sincere protest” into violence, fled the scene when unrest erupted and abandoned demonstrators.