| 28 March 2023, Tuesday |

Ruling Georgian party to withdraw draft bill on foreign agents amid protests

Amid mass protests in the country’s capital Tbilisi, Georgia’s ruling party Georgian Dream announced early Thursday that it will withdraw its draft bill on foreign agents.

“We see that the adopted draft law has caused differences of opinion in the society. The machine of lies was able to present the bill in a negative light and mislead a certain part of the public,” a joint statement by Georgian Dream, People’s Power, and members of the parliamentary majority read.

The statement said that the draft bill was attributed to a false label of ‘Russian law’ and that its adoption in the first reading was presented “as a departure from the European course in the eyes of a part of the public.”

The statement claimed that “radical forces” were also able to involve some of the country’s youth in illegal activities.

“We should be most careful about peace, tranquility and economic development in our country, as well as Georgia’s progress on the path of European integration. Therefore, it is necessary to spend the energy of each of our fellow citizens not on confrontation, but on the development of the country in the right direction,” the statement further said.

It later declared that the “governing powers” decided to “unconditionally withdraw the bill we supported without any reservations,” noting that details on the bill would be explained “as the emotional background subsides.”

Separately, Georgia’s parliament also announced that it will have a limited access regime until next week.

The approval of a draft law on “Transparency of Foreign Influence” led to the demonstrations in Georgia’s capital since Monday, which led to the arrest of 66 people and injured more than 50 law enforcement officers.​​​​​​​

  • Anadolu Agency