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Georgia Arrests Opposition Figure

Irakli Batiashvili in Tbilisi last week (InterPressNews) July 30, 2006 -- Georgian authorities have said they arrested an opposition leader today on charges of giving advice to an outlawed militia leader.

Police took the head of the opposition Forward Georgia party, Irakli Batiashvili, into custody on July 29 after national television aired a recording of a telephone call in which prosecutors said Batiashvili advised an outlawed rebel militia leader on staging a revolt.

The alleged advice was given to Emzar Kvitsiani, who's troops have been fighting for days in the Kodori Gorge.

Supporters of Batiashvili, who was a security minister under Georgia's former President Eduard Shevarnadze, said the arrest was motivated by politics and had no legal basis.


RFE/RL Caucasus Report

RFE/RL Caucasus Report

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