Dtorming of the office of the "United National Movement" Party in Tbilisi. Screenshot of the video on the "Sputnik Грузия" YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fcpVropRCeg

23 February 2021, 16:21

Over 10 activists detained in special operation to arrest Georgian opposition leader Meliya

Law enforcers have detained more than 10 oppositionists who resisted the police during a special operation aimed to arrest Nika Meliya, the head of the "United National Movement" (UNM) Party. His defence will make every effort to release the oppositionist, including filing a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), an advocate has stated.

On February 16, the Georgian Parliament stripped Nika Meliya of parliamentary immunity; and the court ruled to arrest him. On February 18, the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) postponed the arrest amid the resignation of the Prime Minister, Giorgi Gakhariya. Mr Meliya faces up to nine years in prison. The case was opened in connection with the action on June 21, 2019, when hundreds of people suffered and were detained during the dispersal of protesters near the parliament building.

After Meliya's detention, the authorities' struggle with the opposition will receive a new impetus, the "Georgia Online" quotes Gigi Ugulava, a member of the "European Georgia" Party, as saying.

As reported by the "Rustavi-2" TV Channel, the following persons have expressed their regret over the detention of Nika Meliya, the opposition leader: Ian Kelly, a former US Ambassador to Georgia; Michael Carpenter, a diplomat; Mark Clayton, the British Ambassador; and Jim Risch, a US Senator.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on February 23, 2021 at 09:43 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Galina Gotua; Source: CK correspondent

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