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Last updated: 10:55 - 1 May.'18
Ombudsman: Three-Man Rally Arrest Violation of Freedom of Assembly
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 26 Nov.'09 / 13:54

Public Defender’s Office said the arrest of three activists from pro-opposition youth group on November 23 outside the Parliament was a violation of constitutionally guaranteed freedom of assembly and manifestation.

The three activists were released after the Tbilisi City Court found them guilty of violation of rules of holding the rally and for resisting the police orders and fined each of them with GEL 500.

The court’s ruling says that the three activists, standing 25-30 meters away from the Parliament’s entrance were violating the law on rallies, obstructing movement of pedestrians. It also says that the three activists failed to present to the police permission on holding a rally and insulted policemen physically and verbally at the time of the arrest.

“The argument that they failed to submit a relevant permission to the police is groundless from the legal point of view… The law does not envisage the need to take permission for holding rallies or manifestations,” the Public Defender said in a statement released on November 25.

“Available video footage [shot at the time of the arrest] clearly shows that three activists were not blocking the pavement and were not either obstructing free movement of pedestrians… The claims that the participants of the rally insulted policemen physically and verbally are not confirmed by the video footage. It clearly shows that three activists obeyed the police orders and followed them into the police cars without any resistance,” the statement reads.

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