Russia suspends flights to Georgia after violent clashes

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an official order on friday banning Russian airlines from flying to Georgia, starting from July 8th onwards, after violent incidents in the neighbouring country after a Moscow lawmaker speaking in parliament in Tbilisi. The order was published on the Kremlin website as follows”From July 8 2019 Russian airlines are temporarily banned from undertaking flights from the territory of the Russian Federation to the territory of Georgia.”

In Tbilisi protesters went to the streets for the second day on friday calling for snap parliamentary polls and the ruling party’s oligarch leader to resign from power after a police attacked the protesters and left 240 people injured. Conflict between Russia and Georgia remain high, after they fought a war 11 years ago for the region of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Moscow will also suggest that Russian travel agencies should also suspend all tours to neighbouring Georgia.

About 15000 people were gathered outside the parliament to show their anger for the ruling behind the scenes by Bidzina Ivanishvili who is the richest man of Georgia. The Protesters waved cards that reads ‘Stop the USSR’ and ‘Don’t shoot at us, we are your children” etc. According to the health ministry “Around 160 participants and 80 police officers were injured on Thursday when police fired rubber bullets and tear gas against the crowds. More than 300 people were also arrested in the incident.”

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The head of Georgia’s parliament resigned under pressure from protesters on friday. A 19 year old student Ana Ladaria said “Bidzina Ivanishvili must go, his entire puppet government must go.” “Bidzina Ivanishvili made his billions in Russia, he is controlled by Putin. Georgians want to get rid of him.” 47 year old dentist, who is also a protester said to the reportes. Around 10000 protesters had gathered outside the parliament on Thursday after Russian MP Sergei Gavrilov held a meeting with lawmakers mainly from traditional countries which made their irritation more worse.Inside parliament, the opposition lawmakers insisted that the parliamentary speaker, interior minister and state security service chief all should resign over the incident.

The session was stopped and Mr Sergei Gavrilov flew back to Russia later. The United Opposition alliance has pledged to continue their protest until parliament is dismissed and the snap elections are held. Georgian journalists and foreign journalists were both include among the injured. Elene Khoshtaria an opposition member of parliament said “That was a slap in the face of recent Georgian history.” After Georgia was declared independt from the Soviet Union in 1991, The people who supports the separation quarrelled in the regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. In August 2008 Georgia tried to capture South Ossetia again.

But Russia sent troops to defend and driven out Georgian forces and remained there within a striking distance of Tbilisi. After the war which took the lives of hundreds of soldiers and civilians from both sides, Moscow accepted South Ossetia and another separatist region Abkhazia as independent states where then it stationed their permanent military bases.

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