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Opposition leader stops hunger strike

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, November 26
Members of the Alliance of Patriots opposition party, who were protesting the results of the October 31 by-elections in the Sagarejo region, have stopped their hunger strike.

The decision came after the leader of the opposition party, Irma Inashvili - who was voting in Sagarejo - met with a representative of the parliamentary majority, Manana Kobakhidze, on November 25.

Ivashvili stated that she went to the meeting with her draft of amendments to the election code.

According to her, if her demands on amending the election law are not satisfied, the Patriotic Alliance will resume the hunger strike and protests in the spring.

"Our main demand is a change to the electoral environment. We expect that the government will not repeat the example of the Sagarejo by-elections and will conduct the upcoming 2016 elections in a free environment. Otherwise, we will resume our hunger strike and protests in the spring,” Inashvili said.

She has not revealed concrete details of her demands.

Inashvili did not recognize her defeat in the by-elections held on October 31 In Sagarejo held since the Sagarejo MP Tina Khidasheli became the Minister of Defence.

According to Inashvili, the elections were rigged, and her party was demanding the abolition of the Ujarma polling station results since she narrowly lost the elections to the Georgian Dream coalition candidate, Tamar Khidasheli .

Inashvili claimed that the Defence Minister, Tina Khidasheli, created the above-mentioned polling station in order to help the candidate from the ruling Georgian Dream (GD) coalition. She said that only 24 soldiers out of 549 enlisted servicemen were locals from Sagarejo.

She also said that the Minister of Environment Gigla Agulashvili also took steps to support Tamar Khidasheli. Consequently, Inashvili demanded the resignation of both Ministers.

Local NGOs and diplomatic corps positively assessed the by-elections, mentioning only some technical drawbacks.