Ex-Defence Minister Okruahsvili appeals pretrial detention

Former Defence Minister Irakli Okruashvili says that his detention is politically motivated. Photo: IPN.

Agenda.ge, 29 Jul 2019 - 15:32, Tbilisi,Georgia

Lawyers of former Defence Minister of Georgia Irakli Okruashvili have appealed the decision of Tbilisi City Court to deny bail to the former official regarding the June 20 unrest in Tbilisi.

Okruashvili was charged with incitement to group violence during the June 20 protests, which is punishable by six to nine years in prison.

He was denied bail on July 27.

The video released by the Interior Ministry, involving Okruashvili at the rally.

Okruashvili’s lawyer Anna Rekhviashvili says the “charge is politically motivated.” 

Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze says that statements about Okruashvili’s detention and his possible political prosecution are “cheap speculations.”

There is footage which speaks better about the developments. Unfortunately, an  irresponsible party of the opposition always tries to make question marks appear around every issue,” Bakhtadze said.

He stated that Georgia has a fair and impartial court and it is up to the judicial system to reveal the truth.

Okruahsvili served as prosecutor general, interior and defence ministers under the United National Movement government.

After opposing former president and ally Mikheil Saakashvili back in 2007, he was detained on corruption charges. 

Okruashvili left for France several days after he was released, where he lived until 2012.

He returned to Georgia in winter 2012, shortly after the Georgian Dream leadership defeated the nine-year-rule of the United National Movement leadership.

Currently he chairs the Victorious Georgia opposition party and is “fighting to regain his shares” of the Rustavi 2 channel.