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South Ossetian opposition leader considers quitting

by | Feb 15, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – The South Ossetian opposition leader who was injured in an attack by authorities last week says she will decide in three days whether to stay in politics or quit, and that she might ask for political asylum elsewhere.

“It’s the first time I got the idea about getting out of South Ossetia. I was never broken by any Georgian aggression or criminal case, but now I am seriously wondered and will maybe ask some country for political asylum,” Russian news agencies quote Alla Dzhioyeva saying.

Dzhioyeva is currently at the hospital in Tskhinvali. She appeared to win a clear victory in last November’s run-off in the presidential election, but South Ossetia’s Supreme Court refused to recognize her as the winner which led to a deteriorating situation in the region.

New elections were announced for March 25, and Dzhioyeva agreed to a compromise which would let her participate then.

But in mid January, Dzhioyeva abandoned the compromise agreement with authorities, and decided to unilaterally hold an inauguration ceremony on February 10. This was the second such attempt. The last time, which happened in December, she called it off, but this time was determined to go through with it.

But in the evening the day before, masked militiamen attacked her headquarters, and according to her version, she was beaten by several of them, leading her to lose consciousness after which she was transferred to the hospital.

Media reported she had a heart attack while the security forces were taking her out to the car. In a recent interview, Dzhioyeva rejected this version, and says her condition was not caused by a heart attach, but by the rough handling she was subjected to.

The opposition Ossetia webpage http://osetia.kvaisa.ru published photos of her arms with visible bruises and the doctor’s description of her injuries. (http://osetia.kvaisa.ru/1-rubriki/21-fakty-i-kommentarii/ekspertiza-u-dzhioevoj-mnozhestvennye-sledy-fizicheskogo-vozdejstviya/#more-35766)

“When I started in politics I never thought it was so dirty and that the people here are ready to do everything to achieve their goals, not shrinking from nothing. I certainly hope that somewhere in the world is an honest politician, but, unfortunately, we do things differently,” Alla Dzhioyeva says, adding that in three days she will make a decision whether to continue her political activity or not.

A few days ago, the opposition leader appealed to acting president Vadim Brovtsev, demanding that he explains the reason for the attack. She promised to push the issue with Russian courts and if needed also at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Brovtsev himself stated that the situation regarding Alla Dzhioyeva was all taken place within the bounds of law. He also said there are forces that want to destabilize the situation in the region and that the government will actively oppose this.

Meanwhile, candidates continue registering for the upcoming elections on March 25, where neither Dzhioyeva nor Anatoly Bibilov, the Kremlin favorite, will be taking part.

This has cleared the way for new people, one of them being Dimitry Medoev, who since 2008 has been the South Ossetian ambassador to Russia and has lived in Moscow for a long time. Medoev is now considered the new Kremlin favorite, after Bibilov pulled out due to the tense situation.

Up to 12 initiative groups have registered with the so-called Central Election Commission of the region, to promote their candidates for the election on March 25.

One candidate will be the leader of the South Ossetian communist party, Stanislav Kochiev.

On Sunday, candidates for the upcoming elections released a common statement in which they promise to recognize the presidential elections on March 25, regardless of the results.

Analysts estimate that around 30 candidates will take part in the elections on March 25.



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