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Opposition Demands Vote Re-Count, Warns of Protests
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 10 Jan.'08 / 21:25

The nine-party opposition coalition said it would begin protest rallies from January 13 if the votes for the January 5 presidential election were not re-counted.

“We will start protest rallies and this wave of protest will continue unless our votes are re-counted,” MP Kakha Kukava of the Conservative Party, part of the opposition coalition, said. “If there is no re-count of votes, we will refuse to recognize the legitimacy of this election and the legitimacy of Mikheil Saakashvili.”

Kukava was speaking in a live interview with the Georgian Public Broadcaster’s primetime evening news. The interview was part of an earlier agreement between the GPB and the nine-party opposition coalition, by which the GPB agreed to allow the opposition access to live broadcasts.

Kukava also raised opposition claims that the authorities are manipulating election results, in particular by falsifying original vote summary protocols.

MP Pavle Kublashvili of the ruling National Movement Party, who spoke on the same program after Kukava, admitted there had been “shortcomings,” but insisted they would not influence overall results.

Kublashvili also acknowledged that “certain technical mistakes” had been found in some vote summary protocols, but again maintained they would have no bearing on the overall picture.

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