TBILISI, DFWatch – The secretary of Georgia’s National Security Council calls on law enforcement bodies to use lighter forms of punishment.
Giga Bokeria, who is also chair of the inter-agency commission established by the government to monitor the election process, said this at a briefing on Wednesday.
Tens of supporters and members of the Georgian Dream coalition have been arrested during the last few days, including the leaders of regional headquarters, and even members of the regional election commissions. The main charges are resisting police, but Georgian Dream calls the arrests a provocation.
Giga Bokeria said that according to the most recent data, about 30 persons have been detained under rules for administrative detention.
“I want to call on law enforcement bodies that it is important not to spread this violence, when it is possible to use light forms of punishment, like fines.”
Secretary of the Security Council also calls on political leaders to give clear messages to activists and supporters, as violence categorically unacceptable despite political views and negative attitudes towards opponents.
“The government has the largest share of responsibility to retain the peace and organize free and fair election, but the main political parties also have their own role of serious responsibility – what kind of encouragements will they send to supporters,” Bokeria says.
Local non-government organizations and public defender also responded to increased number of detentions lately. Ombudsman calls for parties to avoid such situation not to cause further tension in the country.
Ombudsman studies certain cases of detentions to observe if detainees are treated well. Yet no violations have occurred.
Human Rights Watch dedicated long article to latest arrests in Georgia http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/09/26/georgia-misuse-administrative-detention-violates-rights discussing in details cases of detentions.
Arrest of Dachi Tsaguria, human rights defender and active participant of latest protest was one of the noisiest cases. He is sentenced to ten days in jail. There were claims about him being beaten in detention.
“The government should immediately ensure all those deprived of liberty enjoy their full due process rights and receive a fair trial regardless of whether the charges against them are administrative or criminal,” HRW writes.