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Events of November 2007 need investigation2009-01-15 14:46
Oppositional parties of Georgia's parliament "Strong Georgia" and "Christian Democrats" will press for establishment of a parliamentary committee of investigation into the peaceful manifestation dispersion on November 7 2007.
"This is a matter of principle. The authorities must be responsible for what they did to their people", - one of "Strong Georgia" leaders Georgi Tsagareishvili said in his interview with our observer. According to him the State Chancellery to which the official application for creation of the investigating committee was filed has no right to dismiss the initiative. In compliance with the regulations this issue will be brought up at the plenary session of the parliament in mid to late March.
Tsagareishvili also admits that the "pro-presidential parliament" might reject formation of such a committee. "But we'll not give up. The people will demand the originators of November events to be penalized for what they did", - Tsagareishvili says. - I personally have no doubt that the decision on the action dispersion was taken by the leaders of the power structures headed by Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili. If it is not true, let the parliamentary committee investigate".
The initiative of the committee's formation was proposed by Sozar Subari last December. At that time he accused Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili of criminal conspiracy against its people who at the meeting with Prosecutor General Zurab Adeishvili, Defense Minister of the time David Kezerashvili and ex head of Interior Ministry constitutional security department Dato Akhalaya worked out a plan of demonstration dispersion. "The head of the Interior Ministry ordered to strike the participants mainly to the kidney and stomach, and in extreme cases - in the face. He also told that no participant should stay unbeaten to prevent future protest actions", - Subari stated at the extraordinary parliamentary session on the New Year's Eve. He ascertained he could present evidence - an audio record in particular.
As for the event itself it literally shocked the world. On November 7 2007 the police dispersed the mass demonstration that was far from aggressive with the help of tear gas, rubber bullets and batons. According to official information one person was dead and 508 were taken to hospitals. After that the democratic principles in "the country of revolutionary roses" were placed in doubt by the West.
The country's leader, Mikheil Saakashvili, was forced to appoint early presidential elections - taking him to the victory in the end. But as the opposition asserts today - only due to the fact that the observers turned a blind eye to numerous violations and falsification.
On the anniversary of the demonstration dispersion Saakashvili met with a person who was severely injured in the massacre assuring him that he personally and the country's government had learned the lessons of those events well. "They taught us to solve the problems not in the street but in parliament, by talking, in the atmosphere of mutual tolerance and not by way of scandal", - the president acknowledged.
That same day the demonstrations in Tbilisi associated with this date were held peacefully without any excessive acts. But already in November the Georgian opposition warned that from January it would start the protest actions. And following the above mentioned statement of people's defender of Georgia the 2007 events became the focus of the people's attention again. It would seem the country had witnessed a lot of events making the authorities be responsible before their people.
But this act of dispersion is one of the glaring examples that bring the proclaimed freedom of speech into real challenge.