French Ambassador denounces “violence in democracy” following assault on Georgian Parliament’s majority leader by opposition MP

Mdinaradze on Monday claimed the assault had been a “commissioned provocation”. Photo: Parliament of Georgia, 16 Apr 2024 - 13:32, Tbilisi,Georgia

Sheraz Gasri, the French Ambassador to Georgia, on Tuesday said violence was “never a solution in a democracy”, in comments after a heated discussion on the controversial bill on the transparency of foreign influence in the Georgian Parliament's Committee on Legal Issues saw Aleko Elisashvili, the leader of the Citizens opposition party, physically assault Mamuka Mdinaradze, the head of the ruling Georgian Dream party in the legislative body.

Violence, whether physical or verbal, is never a solution in a democracy, where different opinions have to be freely expressed and any disagreements must be resolved peacefully, through truly inclusive dialogue”, Gasri said.

Mdinaradze on Monday claimed the assault had been a “commissioned provocation”.

The incident came on the backdrop of hearings on the bill that calls for registration of non-commercial legal entities and media outlets in the country as “pursuing the interests of a foreign power” if they derive more than 20 percent of their funding from abroad

The draft laws reintroduction by the ruling party after its retraction last year has been met with criticism by domestic opposition, civil sector and diplomatic representations in the country and public protest in Tbilisi and several other cities across Georgia.