A number of opposition politicians, representatives of various businesses and ordinary citizens gathered in front of the administrative building of the government of Georgia earlier today demanding coronavirus restrictions be lifted.
Under the hashtag სოცაფეთქება which in Georgian means “social explosion” the organisers of the peaceful demonstration said the restrictions affect the social situation in the country and violate human rights.
Therefore, the demonstrators call on the government to lift restrictions on winter resorts, reopen schools and kindergartens and restore operation of municipal and intercity transport as well as remove the curfew.
Opposition leader of More Freedom-Girchi party Zurab Japaridze, who has been demanding the restrictions to be lifted for several months, said otherwise ‘we will sink into a deeper dump’ which will be much more difficult to overcome.
Urging that “all of the restrictions need to be lifted”, he claimed the government is manipulating the coronavirus statistics.
We are a rather poor country and any restriction for us leads to more poverty”, Japaridze said.
Claiming that the government fails to manage the crisis, member of Lelo for Georgia party Grigol Gogelia said that the current restrictions should be ‘lifted wisely’.
European Georgia member Akaki Bobokhidze has also stated that the total lockdown cannot be the solution to the pandemic as ‘we are heading straight into the economic abyss’.
United National Movement supporters have declared that they will not adhere to the curfew and walk on the central Rustaveli Avenue between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. in protest.
Meanwhile, Head of the National Center for Disease Control Amiran Gamkrelidze says the restrictions, together with vaccination, are one of the main weapons against the pandemic.