30 years since tragic events of April 9 when Soviet troops killed Georgians demanding country’s independence

  • The age of the people killed on April ranged between 16 and 50. The photo by Mikheil Kikvadze, now preserved in the National Archive of Georgia, depicts protests on Rustaveli Avenue on April 7-8.

Agenda.ge, 9 Apr 2019 - 12:06, Tbilisi,Georgia

Today Georgia remembers those who lost their lives when Moscow-directed Soviet tanks dispersed a peaceful demonstration demanding independence for Georgia 30 years ago, killing at least 20 people in the process and injuring hundreds of others.

Many of those killed on 9 April 1989 were in between the ages of 16 and 31.

  • Click here to read the full history behind the April 9 tragedy.

The date has been etched into the minds of locals and is remembered as the day of national unity.

Morning of April 9. Photo: Ioseb Davitashvili/National Archive of Georgia. 

It is recognised as a public holiday in Georgia.

Two years later in 1991, the first President of Georgia Zviad Gamsakhurdia declared the independence of Georgia at the plenary session of the Georgian parliament building in Tbilisi.

Speaking about the importance of the day Georgian Parliament Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze said that the plenary session of parliament will be named after Gamsakhurdia.

The video made by the Ministry of Justice of Georgia from the photos in the National Archive, depicts April 9 related situation. 

Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze says that the country remains committed to the values of April 9.

The day united all of Georgia. Our centuries-old history is fighting for freedom and the fight still continues. The unity on April 9 brought freedom and the restoration of statehood. It is symbolic that two years after the tragic day we gained independence,” Bakhtadze said.

Six streets in Tbilisi will be named after the six women who were killed on that day, Tbilisi authorities have stated.

The streets will be named after Manana Loladze, Tamuna Dolidze, Tina Enukidze, Mzia Tchintcharadze, Tamar Mamulashvili and Eliso Tchipashvili.

People killed on April 9. Photo: IPN.

Many streets in the capital and in the regions have been named after the April 9 victims over the past several years.

There are two streets, one in Tbilisi and another in Signagi, which were named after 16-year-old Eka Bezhanishvili, who was killed on April 9.