TBILISI, DFWatch – Georgia has changed its laws so that parliament can meet in the new parliament building in Kutaisi already from May 1.

During a transition period, Georgia’s parliamentarians may gather at either the new building or in the old building in Tbilisi.

Chairman of parliament’s judiciary committee Pavle Kublashvili says the bill, which amends parliament’s regulations, is not in violation of the constitution.

The constitution says that parliament can not gather in the new building in Kutaisi until after the election this October.

President Mikheil Saakashvili caused great discontent when he announced his idea to move parliament to Kutaisi, Georgia’s second city, located in the west of the country.

Later he declared that the first session in the new building would take place on May 26, Georgia’s independence day.

But there was some uncertainty over whether it was legal to start using the new building that soon, given what the constitution says.

Kublashvili doesn’t specify the reasons for the bill, but it probably serves to create a legal basis for keeping Saakashvili’s timetable.

Pavle Kublashvili says the government thinks it’s important that this parliament has the opportunity to hold sessions at both the new site in Kutaisi, and in the old building in Tbilisi.

“I think that making this norm more specific is in accordance with this political statement,” he said.