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Refugees call West to quiet Saakashvili26.01.2011 | 21:51
Georgian authorities continue oppressing forced evictees from Abkhazia and South Ossetia that live in Tbilisi. A police operation aimed at expelling refugees from buildings has been on for several days in the capital. Poor people are ready to seek political asylum in the West. Will Europe and the States help Georgian citizens in their struggle against country leaders? Alexander Shalamberidze, People's Party political secretary expressed his opinion in an interview with GeorgiaTimes.
It will be remembered that the expulsion of refugees started in Tbilisi last week in a most severe way involving the police, special equipment and trucks overfilled with people... There is an impression that some anti-utopia action film about a dictatorship in Europe is being shot in the capital of Georgia.
Naturally, the authorities of the "democratic" and "free" republic assure that eviction of refugees complies with all international standards, and most part of the evictees are just happy to be given landless homes in provinces instead of their lodgings in the capital.
The opposition has already caught the Ministry of Refugee Affairs on forgery. According to Lasha Chkhartishvili, a leader of the Conservative Party of Georgia, a propaganda story on Georgian TV with a refugee woman boasting of new living conditions was a frame-up. The part of this woman was performed by a ministry employee - a relative of Koba Subeliani, one of the deputy ministers.
Real refugees have long been fed up with this attitude of the authorities. They have no one to go to inside the country: thanks to the efforts of Mikheil Saakashvili and his teammates Georgia's civil society looks more like a comatose patient or even a cold corpse. Western diplomats are the last resort.
Representatives of forced evictees have already announced their intention to seek political asylum for refugees in Europe and the USA. As Alexander Shalamberidze, a leader of People's Party told GeorgiaTimes correspondent, the refugees are now organizing pickets at the embassies of the USA, Great Britain, France and Germany. "These people want to leave the country that has no place for them. And they have nowhere to go to. The districts they are living in now are blocked by the police, security officers take them out of their homes. They are citizens of the Georgian state, and Saakashvili and his gang are literally pushing them out of the country", - our interlocutor resents.
According to the politician, the actions pursued by country authorities confirm that Georgia is a dictatorship. "Dictatorship became possible because of lack of democracy and one-party government as well as absence of forces that would keep Saakashvili in check. The president of the country is a nationalist, parliamentary majority consists of nationalists and the government is nationalistic. It is tyranny here!"- Shalamberidze states.
Rigidity and velocity of Georgian authorities evicting refugees could be accounted for Tbilisi's need in free spaces or replenishment of the city budget by selling them. But there is no evidence proving this: giant buildings have been vacant for more than 6 months since first mass evictions in July. Alexander Shalamberidze carried out a special survey to find out what happened to the buildings that used to be occupied by forced evictees. "These houses are empty. They are not sold either. And people who were driven out onto the street live in tents near the Ministry for Refugee Affairs", - he remarked.
People's Party secretary believes that this tactics of Georgian leaders must be opposed at the system level. "Power spoils anyone - there has to be balance in government so that no force prevailed. I think people that are monitoring processes that are now taking place in Georgia gradually understand that power can't be given to one party and one person and that we should have a balanced constitution", - Shalamberidze emphasized.
He also added that in his opinion resorting to Europe and the States is an effective way to counteract country leaders. "Certainly, president of Georgia has a "smart" way of dealing with international organizations. But the West knows now that Saakashvili is a liar. I spoke to Americans, Germans engaged in various international missions here. They saw with their own eyes what methods are used for refugee eviction. And I believe this won't pass smoothly for current leaders of the country", - Alexander Shalamberidze is sure.