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Six Opposition Parties Denied State Funding
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 15 Jul.'08 / 22:22

Parliament passed with its final hearing on July 15 a controversial amendment to the law that denies six opposition parties boycotting Parliament state funding.

The new law makes the New Rights Party; Freedom Party; Movement for United Georgia; Georgia’s Way; Party of People and National Forum ineligible for the funding. The amendment deprives them of GEL 600,000 in total. Opposition parties have condemned the ruling party’s initiative as a “punitive measure” and “persecution” by the authorities for their decision not to enter the new parliament.

The Conservative Party – part of the opposition coalition – will receive state funding even though it have renounced its MP mandates because it won more than 3% of votes in the 2006 local elections.

The same rule will mean that the Republican and Industrialist parties will also continue receiving funding from the state budget. Despite winning less than 4% of the vote in the May 21 parliamentary elections, they each got more than 3% in the local elections.

The Labor Party, whose leaders still remain MPs, will be eligible for the funding and is expected to receive about GEL 500,000.

Other parties, which will receive state funding are the Christian-Democrats, On our Own and the Georgian Troupe; the later two were part of the opposition coalition, but unlike other parties from the coalition, took their seats in Parliament.

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