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Beware, President is coming!

10.08.2009
Tamta Talakvadze

Using severe methods of political persecution and in a struggle against different opinions has become common in the present governance of our country. Escort police blocking roads illegally when the escort of the former head of the Adjara Autonomous Republic ,Aslan Abashidze, was driving in the street did not surprise anyone but it is nothing compared to the story that was told to our office by a soldier.

A soldier from Khelvachauri Brigade # 5 visited the Batumi Office of the Human Rights Centre. He claimed that his rights were violated. However, he refused to reveal his name due to his job.

“I will go crazy if I do not tell this story. Extreme violence prevails in the country. I am a soldier. I was having a vacation for several days. I was sitting in a boulevard in the evening. Suddenly police officers rushed to me, twisted my hands and took me to the police department without explaining why I was arrested. They started beating me there; they beat me so that I felt like I had a  brain concussion. I was shouting, what do you want from me? You have mixed me up with someone else. They did not allow me to contact my family or a lawyer. They only allowed me to call my chief. When they understood that I was a soldier indeed they told me that they would issue a fine of 400 GEL and they would release me. When I asked why they got confused and then said: the President was in Batumi today. It turns out that you have hampered the movement of his escort. One of the police officers gave me a “friendly” piece of advice: You cannot change anything. Just pay the fine and you will be released. They fined me 400 GEL for nothing. I’d rather pay the fine than lose my job but this kind of unfairness is unacceptable. Is this our democracy?  Drinking beer in a boulevard in the evening cost me 400 GEL.

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