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Parliamentary Probe into High-Profile Murder Cases Voted Down
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 1 Dec.'09 / 18:40

The Parliament voted down on December 1 a proposal by Christian-Democratic Movement (CDM), a leading party in the parliamentary minority, to set up a parliamentary commission to investigate allegations on cover-up of police role in several murder cases.

Lawmakers from CDM specified during the debate before the voting that they wanted to probe into how the police handled investigation of murder cases of Sandro Girgvliani, Amiran Robakidze, as well as of Zurab Vazagashvili and Aleksandre Khubulov.

Zurab Vazagashvili and Aleksandre Khubulov were killed by the police special purpose unit while driving in their car in central Tbilisi on May 2, 2006. Police claimed they responded with fire only after shots were fired from the car. But families of two killed young men and their lawyers challenged the official version. However, the authorities closed the investigation into allegations that police used excessive force for lack of evidence in April, 2007. CDM lawmakers said that new evidence into this case emerged after the family of Vazagashvili and its lawyers obtained an alternative ballistic examination results, reportedly showing that no shots were fired from inside the car.

MP Giorgi Akhvlediani of CDM said that failure of the Parliament to provide alternative probe into these murder cases would “seriously discredit” the legislative body.

Lawmakers from the ruling party accused the politicians, who were pushing for the issue, including CDM lawmakers, for using “personal tragedies” of victims’ families for “gaining political scores.”

This is the second time when the initiative for the parliamentary probe into these cases was voted down by the ruling party lawmakers. The same initiative was rejected in February, 2007.

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