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Revolutionary disposition of Georgian conservatives2009-03-23 16:34
Last week the Conservatives initially outshone by other oppositional forces changed over to the offensive. The party leaders met with ex Defense Minister Irakli Okruashvili, commissioned Bidzina Giorgobiani to lead protest rallies against Georgian authorities in Europe and vetoed arrival of another ex Defense Minister - Tengiz Kitovani - in Tbilisi.
The Conservative Party of Georgia (CPG) is part of the United Opposition. However there is tough confrontation for the future power between the parties that declared war against the regime. Alliance for Georgia led by Irakli Alasania is holding a plebiscite that is practically similar to the signature collection by the United Opposition. Nino Burdzhanadze's "Democratic Movement - United Georgia" regularly becomes the center of funding scandals. "For Fair Georgia" leader Zurab Nogaideli specializes in exposures. All this fuss made the Conservatives step back at first.
But as none of the numerous oppositional parties is going to surrender the Conservatives decided to act. They forbade ex Defense Minister Tengiz Kitovani not only to appear but even mention the April 9 rallies. It will be remembered that Kitovani who went through the overthrow of Georgia's first president Zviad Gamsakhurdia stated on Rustavi-2 TV that he was going to join the oppositional forces. People were puzzled to see the "hero" of the past considered to be loyal to the regime on Rustavi-2 TV. Unlike Kitovani no appearance on TV was made possible for Okruashvili.
One of my friends in Tbilisi was all resentful. He kept saying: you really are too much for us Mr. Kitovani! We have almost completely forgotten about you and here you are coming back to Georgia. You have had indispensable experience of shooting down legitimately elected presidents and settling international relations and political disputes by force of arms. Then you disappeared to nowhere and we have been reaping the fruits of your shooting - in Tbilisi, in Abkhazia and in other regions.
Essentially the Conservatives expressed the public opinion. However they added a traditional anti-Russian note to their statement. According to one of the CPG leaders Bidzina Gudzhabidze Kitovani's coming to Georgia and his expected participation in the rallies "explicitly show that the Georgian and Russian special services simultaneously worked out a plan to discredit the opposition". "Why did "pocket TV channels" of the authorities refuse to give TV time to the opposition but willingly gave it to the man with a criminal background and moreover "Russia's agent" ?" - Gudzghabidze asked.
Time will show whether Kitovani will come to Tbilisi or not. At the same time in Berlin the Conservatives had a meeting with another ex minister - Irakli Okruashvili who is also planning to come back to Tbilisi. According to the CPG leaders the unique vision of the April 9 rally organization was worked out as well as political arrangement following Saakashvili's withdrawal, GHN IA reports. In Berlin Zviad Dzidziguri and Kakha Kukava, also Conservatives, met with another person forgotten in Tbilisi. Bidzina Giorgobiani (another "ex) joined the CPG.
According to GHN IA he will deal with foreign policy and will lead a protest action on April 9 abroad as simultaneously rallies in Tbilisi and in many European countries are planned.
Ex chairman of forest department of Georgia Bidzina Giorgobiani is under multiple accusations indicted in his absence imposing 10-year imprisonment. He fled the country and obtained political asylum in Germany. In his video address for Georgian TV channels Giorgobiani stated about the Interior Ministry's involvement (Vano Merabishvili) in illegal cutover and export of wood from Tskhinval district.