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"Law on occupied territories" can be softened soon2013-04-03 11:31
Georgian Parliament starts the mitigation of the punishment for "illegal entry" into the territory of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, the Kommersant reported. Supporters of the president Mikheil Saakashvili call the government's initiative "unacceptable concession to Moscow."gt-en-newsitem-inside
A source in the Georgian Parliament told the edition that the amendment must be submitted to the vote "at the next plenary session of the Parliament." No one doubts its adoption.
Yesterday, the Parliamentary Committee on Legal Affairs approved the government's initiative on "partial decriminalization of crossing the Abkhaz and South Ossetian sections of the Georgian-Russian border from Russia."
Now, if a Russian or a citizen of another country after visiting Abkhazia and South Ossetia enters the territory of Georgia, he is to be fined in the amount of 400 GEL ($ 250). Only after "repeat offense" a person is punishable with imprisonment from two to four years (as it is now).
The idea of mitigation of the "Law on occupied territories" was announced in early February by the Georgian State Minister for Reintegration Paata Zakareishvili.
"I believe that Parliament will soon approve the amendments. This is not a concession, it is a humane act", the Minister said at that time.