Sixty-six demonstrators have been detained in Georgia and dozens of police have been injured after violent clashes broke out within the capital Tbilisi in opposition to the federal government’s plans to introduce controversial “international agent” laws, authorities mentioned Wednesday.
The demonstrations broke out late Tuesday after lawmakers within the ex-Soviet Caucasus nation gave preliminary backing for the draft regulation paying homage to Russian laws used to strain critics.
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“Regulation enforcement officers arrested 66 folks in accordance with articles… on minor hooliganism and disobeying authorized requests of regulation enforcement officers,” the inside ministry mentioned in a press release.
“On account of violent actions of the assembled residents, as much as 50 staff of the Ministry of Inner Affairs have been injured,” the assertion added, saying that a number of of regulation enforcement officers remained in hospital.
Georgian authorities have confronted mounting worldwide criticism over perceived backsliding on democratic reforms, together with the jailing of ex-leader Mikheil Saakashvili.
The US embassy in Georgia described the laws as “Kremlin-inspired” and mentioned it contradicted the nation’s aspirations to affix the European Union.
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