Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, for the third day in a row, due to dissatisfaction with the government. The protests started over a controversial bill, but it was withdrawn by the ruling party after two days of demonstrations.
The law would allow organizations to be classified as foreign agents if they receive more than 20 percent of their funding from abroad. This label is used in Russia to silence journalists, activists and other critics. Opponents of the law fear it will undermine democracy. There were also fears that the legislation would stand in the way of EU membership. Georgia wants to join the union.
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Demonstrators waved the flags of Georgia, Ukraine and the European Union at the parliament building in Tbilisi. They were congratulated on their victory by President Salome Zurabishvili. “I am proud of the people who are making their voices heard,” she said in a televised speech. She also stated that there is “a lack of confidence in the government as we continue our European path.”
The opposition called for new protests after the bill was withdrawn. Several opposition parties said in a joint statement, “As long as there are no guarantees that Georgia follows a pro-Western path, these operations will not stop.” He also called for the release of protesters who were arrested on Tuesday and Wednesday. That’s what happened now, according to the authorities. Previous demonstrations resulted in clashes with the police, who used water cannons and tear gas.
Read also | How a “Russian law” leads to pro-European protests and storming of parliament in Georgia
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