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Georgian opposition on the way to health resorts2009-05-18 20:43
It looks like the opposition has run out of new ideas. Everything from throwing carrots at the president's residence to "storming" the police HQ has been tried out over recent 5 weeks. The authorities have stood the test by applying no force against protesters. The only advance the opposition achieved is the head of the state's consent to constitutional changes.
Decision to call off the blockade of the main street of Tbilisi shows decrease in the protest activity of Tbilisians. Tonight the demonstrators opened the road in front of Georgian Public TV building - Kostava street. All cell-cages were moved away from traffic ways up to pavements. Traffic was completely restored in the morning.
Part of the opposition was reluctant to leave the forefront heading for a split between the people's leaders, GeorgiaTimes wrote. It was Irakli Alasania, the most soft-hearted opponent of Saakashvili, Alliance for Georgia leader who suggested unblocking the street. Hisses and cries of support were heard and last night, eventually, at the meeting near the parliament building the orators assured the participants of disobedience campaign and journalists there was no schism in their ranks. The ex diplomat's initiative was finally adopted at the meeting of the protest HQ.
There are many reasons to wind up protests in Tbilisi. The main thing is the dialogue with the authorities - not an ideal one though - has taken place. Much of it is owed to Alasania's flexibility. Mikheil Saakashvili suggested creation of a state constitutional committee that will boost changes in Georgia's political system and its transformation into a parliamentary republic as the opposition requires. The parliamentary minority is already discussing the issue of committee formation at the negotiations in Stary Tbilisi hotel. "We believe much will depend on its correct formation and efficiency", - National Democratic party leader Bachuki Kardava told the journalists, New Region reports. Speaker of the Georgian parliament David Bakradze suggested that all political forces get down to specific discussion of the coming reforms next week. The leaders who hotheartedly rejected Saakashvili's proposal have not indicated their willingness to work out a new constitutional model so far.
Gradually the leaders of opposition get short of material resources they were luring people to the street actions with. People of the capital got tired of going to Rustaveli Avenue, Saakashvili's residence and the Public TV as if to work. Besides the party leaders are fed up with the look of Tbilisi's landscape with cage-cells all over the place. Today they stated they were going to health resorts - to raise the people against the tyrant there. Please, don't think ill about it. According to the Conservative party the April 9 party headquarters filed applications for protest rallies to Batumi and Kutaisi Mayor's offices.
However the rallies in Tbilisi have not been completely abandoned by the opposition. So far. There is a new "corridor of shame" in front of the Public TV building but two national TV channels - Rustavi 2 and Imedi refused to report on the action that has been on for three weeks already. They expressed solidarity with their colleagues: "We consider any pressure on the journalists inacceptable whoever the initiator is.
In solidarity with our colleagues we believe this is the way we can avoid provocations that might take place in front of the TV building, - the special statement goes. It is most likely that without video cameras the opposition will consider pickets in front of the First Channel useless".