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Georgia: Political Crisis Continues To Unfold

Tbilisi, 10 November 2003 (RFE/RL) -- The political crisis in Georgia continued to unfold today with opposition leaders refusing to back down from their demands that President Edward Shevardnadze (pictured) resign. Earlier, Georgia election officials, citing procedural violations, said they have thrown out election results in almost 10 percent of the country's voting districts and set new votes in the districts for next week.

But the small number of votes affected is unlikely to appease those who say Shevardnadze and his supporters rigged the election.

Amid the chaos, Shevardnadze yesterday spoke to Russian President Vladimir Putin. A presidential spokesman said that Putin assured Shevardnadze that Moscow is ready to "give all possible support to Georgia."

Meanwhile, outside the parliament building in Tbilisi, over 2,000 opposition supporters have been massed since the morning. The protesters say they won't move until the president annuls the disputed parliamentary election and then resigns.