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Free Democrats: No deal with Saakashvili party

by | Feb 19, 2015

“I would not comment seriously on Baron Münchausen’s statements,” Irakli Alasania responded to Mikheil Saakashvili’s TV interview. (DF Watch.)

Tbilisi, DFWatch -After exchanging barrels of criticism, Georgia’s two main pro-western political parties deny likelihood of future political alliance.

At least one of them, Free Democrats of the former defense minister Irakli Alasania, is obviously firm in its loath toward alliance with Mikheil Saakashvili’s United National Movement.

In an unlikely sharp remark, former diplomat Alasania called Saakashvili ‘Baron Münchausen’, referring to the fictional German nobleman, a pathological liar.

“I would not comment seriously on Baron Münchausen’s statements,” Alasania, a former Georgian ambassador to the UN, told journalists asked to comment statements of Mikheil Saakashvili aired on Tuesday’s TV interview, where he accused former Defense Minister of suspending Georgian military production that, according to the former president, had been commenced by his government.

Irakli Alasania, 40, Minister of Defense since Georgian Dream beat the UNM in 2012 elections, was dismissed in November after his harsh statements toward the Prosecutor Office in the wake of detention of several officers at Ministry of Defense.

Political party Free Democrats led by Alasania, which had been Georgian Dream member, immediately left coalition and declared itself an opposition. Foreign Affairs and European and Euro-Atlantic Integration ministers, also Free Democrats, followed suit and stepped down the following day.

Some of UNM supporters view Alasania’s Free Democrats as a natural ally against the ruling GD coalition, seen as having the same foreign policy agenda.

When relations between Alasania on one hand and Irakli Garibashvili, Bidzina Ivanishvili and GD core members on another, hit bottom in early November, the UNM rushed to drive a wedge between former allies stating that prosecution of the Defense Ministry officers, an apple of discord, was politically motivated, thus openly siding with Alasania.

During several public appearences Irakli Alasania said that didn’t rule out tactical alliance with the UNM. Those statements have provoked harsh backlash even from his fellow Free Democrats. Some of them declared that in such case they would leave the party.

Asked whether widespread rumors over undercover talks with Giga Bokeria, a heavyweight UNM politician, were true Alasania replied flatly ‘no’.

“No talks about political alliance with the National Movement neither now nor in the future,” Zurab Abashidze, Free Democrat MP and parliament’s vice-speaker, was quoted by Rezonansi newspaper as saying.

“If the road to Heaven would pass through (alliance with) Saakashvili, we’ll never do it… No single member of the Free Democrats will do it,” Gia Tsagareishvili, MP, said to journalists.

“I’m absolutely serious. As far as I’m alive, no agreement with National Movement will happen,” Tsagareishviili said.

Earlier, in an interview with Kviris Palitra weekly, Bidzina Ivanishvili could not resist not to slap at Alasania. He said Alasania and his team had had good political prospects but ‘pursued bad direction’ and his statements looked like written by Giga Bokeria.



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