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A March demonstration by Giorgadze supporters in Tbilisi (InterPressNews)
September 6, 2006 -- Georgian police today raided the offices of several opposition groups and arrested dozens of supporters of exiled opposition leader Igor Giorgadze.
Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili said a total of 29 people, including some key Giorgadze supporters, had been arrested.
He said authorities had information they were planning to bring down the government to help Giorgadze return to Georgia.
Giorgadze, a former national security minister, is wanted in Georgia for allegedly plotting a 1995 assassination attempt against then President Eduard Shevardnadze.
Since President Mikheil Saakashvili came to power following Georgia's 2003 Rose Revolution, Giorgadze has repeatedly called for the president's resignation.
Giorgadze, who fled Georgia 10 years ago, said on Russian television today that the arrests of his supporters were aimed at intimidating Georgian voters ahead of upcoming local elections.
(Rustavi-2, civil.ge, Caucasus Press)