Georgian police have stormed the primary workplace of the opposition United Nationwide Motion (UNM) and detained its chief Nikanor (Nika) Melia. The politician is being accused of inciting riots within the capital two years in the past. </p><div><p>A crowd of supporters tried to forestall Melia’s arrest on Tuesday. The officers broke into the UNM’s workplace within the nation's capital Tbilisi and seized him.
Total, 21 individuals had been detained in clashes with police, the First Channel TV station reported, citing the Inside Ministry. The nation’s jail service confirmed to the channel that Melia has been taken into custody.
UNM was based by Mikheil Saakashvili who seized energy in 2003 because of the so-called Rose Revolution. He was elected president the subsequent 12 months and dominated Georgia till 2013. Saakashvili left the nation shortly afterwards, and a number of other legal instances had been launched in opposition to him. UNM misplaced energy in 2012.
Underneath Saakashvili’s rule, Georgia attacked the breakaway area of South Ossetia in 2008, triggering a struggle with Russia.
Melia is being accused of incitement to violence throughout the June 2019 riots in Tbilisi. He was initially launched on bail, however later violated the bail circumstances by publicly taking off his ankle monitor final 12 months. The politician argues that the prosecution in opposition to him is unfair.
A brand new bail of 40,000 Georgian lari ($12,000) was set, however Melia refused to pay it. MPs then voted to revoke Melia’s parliamentary immunity on February 17, and a courtroom ordered for him to be detained the subsequent day.
Newly-appointed Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili stated that every one residents should observe the legislation, no matter political affiliation. The UNM, in the meantime, is holding a protest rally exterior the primary authorities constructing afterward Tuesday, demanding for Melia to be launched.
Melia’s case has led to a full-blown political disaster. Garibashvili’s predecessor Giorgi Gakharia resigned as PM on February 18, expressing hope that the transfer would ease tensions within the nation.
The 2019 riots had been sparked by the go to of Sergey Gavrilov, a Russian MP from the Communist Get together, to Tbilisi. The opposition was enraged that Gavrilov, who was taking part in a religious-themed assembly held in Georgia’s parliament constructing, was sitting in a chair reserved by protocol for the speaker of the parliament.
Moscow responded to the riots by banning Russian airways from transporting Russian residents to Georgia.
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