The US Department of State has called on Georgian leaders and law enforcement ‘to protect the constitutional right to freedom of expression’ following violent attacks against journalists and civic activists at the Tbilisi Pride counter rally by right-wing protesters on July 5.
We condemn the violent attacks in Georgia that took place on July 5 on civic activists, on community members, on journalists…Georgians, as do people around the world, have a right to express their views, even when in a particular context they may be seen as unpopular or controversial,” US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said.
US State Department spokesperson Ned Price has tweeted:
We condemn the July 5 violent attacks in Georgia on civic activists, community members, and journalists. Georgia’s leaders and law enforcement are obligated to protect the Constitutional rights to freedom of expression and assembly and prosecute those participating in violence. https://t.co/gQj9goCsN7— Ned Price (@StateDeptSpox) July 5, 2021
Price also reminded the Georgian authorities ‘to protect all of those exercising their constitutional rights, to protect journalists exercising freedom of the press, and to publicly condemn the violence.’
The US Embassy in Georgia has signed a joint statement with the embassies of other countries regarding the violent events in Tbilisi, Price announced.
The United States Embassy in Georgia signed on to a joint statement along with several other missions on the ground. So it’s not just the United States speaking up about this; it’s several of our like minded partners as well”, Ned Price stated.
US Congressman Adam Kinzinger has also tweeted on ongoing violent events in Tbilisi:
I have been monitoring the violence in Tbilisi, and stand by our embassy’s statement. I am committed to discovering who was behind the violence on the LGBT community. America believes in freedom. https://t.co/eMyNDYx8J9— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) July 6, 2021
Right-wing counter protesters attacked journalists and the offices of Tbilisi Pride and the Shame movement on July 5, as a result of which about 50 journalists were injured.
Organisers of the Tbilisi Pride march had to cancel the event due to ‘the inaction of the executive power’.
A silent rally took place in front of the parliament building on Rustaveli Avenue yesterday at 8 p.m., where right-wing counter demonstrators again violently interfered.
100 people have been arrested following the violent counter-demonstration against silent rally on Rustaveli Avenue, central Tbilisi on July 6, 68 were dismissed on a signature basis.