Civic activists, citizens and representatives of various opposition parties have gathered outside the Parliament building in capital Tbilisi on Monday to show support for European integration of the country.
Organised by the civic movement Shame and a number of non-governmental organisations, the gathering is aiming to show the commitment of citizens of the country to its European course, with flags of Georgia and the European Union unveiled at the rally.
As the event brought its participants together, Georgian President Salome Zourabichvili released a video address to the citizens by saying the country was at a "crucial moment in history" and asked for calm in consideration of the significance of the moment. She also appealed to law enforcement to ensure order during the rally, which was announced earlier this month and went ahead after the President asked organisers to refrain from holding it.
Besides the rally in Tbilisi, simultaneous gatherings of citizens were held in other cities of Georgia.
The demonstrations follow the European Commission's recommendation on granting Georgia a "European prospective" last week, after its review of the EU membership bid submitted by the country’s Government.
The decision fell short of granting Georgia the membership candidate status, with the Commission outlining a set of requirements for the country that must be met by the end of the year, before a fresh consideration on granting the candidate status is made.