Deadly repression as Georgians march against Saakashvili

Five days of protests in the Georgian capital Tbilisi culminated in harsh repression May 26 as riot police used tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannon to disperse several hundred demonstrators demanding resignation of President Mikheil Saakashvili. At least two are reported dead following a confrontation outside the parliament building. A government statement accused protesters of “planning to violently resist the police” and intending to illegally occupy the main street outside parliament to prevent the annual Independence Day parade. Protest leader Nino Burjanadze, who has promised a “revolution,” pledged further demonstrations: “We will not stop. We will do everything to get rid of this government which hates its people.” (AFP, Reuters, May 26)

See our last posts on Georgia, the Caucasus, and the protest wave in Europe and the Middle East

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