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Psycho attack in progress2009-04-21 13:32
The protest week will start on April 21 after the four-day timeout for Easter in Tbilisi. However the break in confrontation between the authorities and opposition was interrupted by the opponents' traditional shootouts from both sides. From Tuesday experts foresee "a hot week". Tbilisian confrontation started on April 9 has already been labeled a "psycho war" or "a war of nerves".
Those whose nerves won't fail will win, the absolute majority of Georgian experts believe. The authorities seem to be high strung, the opposition leaders assert over and over again after new portions of bruises and scratches their supporters get in unclear circumstances at nighttime. Tbilisi is seriously apprehending the riot police brigades of Vano Merabishvili, the Interior Minister. Ex Defense Minister Georgy Karkarashvili is now busy forming his own patrol "police". From April 21 the opposition will be guarded by the squads of their supporters.
Last weekend some civil society representatives signed an address to Georgian citizens calling for prevention of violence and its escalation in the country and asking all political forces - both the authorities and the opposition to solve all disputes through dialogue. A group of Georgia's public organizations urge the authorities and opposition to start negotiations with "a double agenda" in order to discuss proposals put forward by both sides. "As the opinions of oppositional parties and the authorities are not in line with each other on the subject of negotiations which brings the political process to a deadlock the talks must have a double agenda with the proposals made by both sides being their discussion point, of course. Besides, it is mandatory to ensure transparency in the negotiating process", - the statement signed by 18 public organizations is presented on Civil Georgia.
Journalists Zviad Koridze, Lasha Tugushi, sociologist Yago Kachkachishvili and psychologist Gaga Nizharadze adhered to the address. The public figures emphasize that the Georgian population's protest action is fully legal and is in compliance with the democratic standards. It is mentioned in the statement that the authorities must protect the rights of citizens including the right to protest and not repeat the mistakes of November 2007.
In the meantime the war on nerves is still on. The authorities are taking the lead now. The Interior Ministry of Georgia disseminated the following information: there are no Interior Ministry riot brigades but the oppositionists are deliberately heating up the situation misinforming the society.
The time-tested methods were brought into play - videos and confessionary statements. This time Georgian Interior Ministry unveiled the evidence of Jaba Kokaya, an opposition protest participant who had been allegedly beaten by the authorities according to the evidence he gave on the incident of April 17, GHN reports. Jaba Kokaya asserts that after the end of the action he went to Lilo village on his personal affairs where the fight on a minor traffic incident took place. According to his evidence the opposition took advantage of this particular case that has nothing to do with the political confrontation. "I got back to the demonstration and met a few people. They asked me what was going on. I explained I had had a fight. And then they suggested taking advantage of it and stating I had been beaten by a riot brigade. I was a bit drunk, a bit shocked and agreed with them", - GHN quotes Kokaya's words. Kokaya does not name the persons who turned this case into an oppositionist-massacred-by-the-authorities story.