Moscow is angry that Russian Channel 1 TV host Vladimir Posner was not allowed to celebrate his birthday in Georgia amid noisy protests. However, the Kremlin acknowledges that the Georgian government is blaming the opposition for the unrest. A Russian journalist known for his statements against Georgia’s territorial integrity left Georgia prematurely with about 50 friends due to protests. However, they managed to break the regulations related to the pandemic in Georgia and raised the question – did it happen with the support of the Georgian state? Tbilisi claims that the guests from Russia were fined for violating the law, which Posner himself denies.
- Was there a basis for the protest and why was there noise in Tbilisi?
- Is the problem the arrival of Vladimir Posner in Tbilisi or what happened after that?
At first glance, there is nothing condemnable for a foreign citizen to decide to celebrate his 87th birthday in Georgia and bring dozens of friends with him. Nobody judges tourists because they like Georgian wine and cuisine, they are attracted by the hospitality of Georgians and think that they can be well received in this country.
But this logic is changing dramatically in Georgia as the country fights a pandemic, people live in conditions of restraint, and jubilees and their guests from the occupier country are allowed to do what is strictly forbidden to the citizens of the host country.
A heavy emotional background to this story is the fact that the world-famous guest Jubilee – does not respect the territorial integrity of the host country and speaks the vocabulary of the leaders of the occupier country.
It is a fact that the visit of Posner and about 50 of his friends to Georgia caused such a noisy protest rally that Those who arrived for 3 days could not stay in Georgia for a single day.
The protest does not surprise political scientist Gia Nodia. As he told RFE / RL, the impression remained that the irritation of the people was mainly caused by the inadequacy or passivity of the government.
“Different aspects of this story are problematic for different people. The main thing for me is that Posner and his friends found themselves in a privileged position.
The rules that exist for Georgian citizens did not apply to them and people perceived that they found themselves in a privileged position with the support of the government. Against this background, the people’s protest is natural and justified. “ – Gia Nodia tells us.
Published at the end of the day on April 1st In the statement Posner notes that the people who protested against him “They are not worthy of attention” And so he is not going to talk about this topic either in TV shows or in other formats.
For Elene Khoshtaria, one of the main organizers of the March 31 rally, and for Elene Khoshtaria, the founder of the Droa movement, the big problem is that the Kremlin’s “resonant” servant enters Georgia so freely and understands the law.
As Khoshtaria tells us, before the noise was heard, the Georgian authorities allowed Posner and Miss Amala to move around and have dinner during curfew, while Georgian citizens were immediately fined in a similar situation.
- According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, 32 persons were fined in accordance with Article 42 (10) of the Code of Administrative Offenses for violating the rules of isolation and quarantine by the employees of the Patrol Police Department“And they left the country only after paying the fine. According to official reports, 9 out of 41 people did not break the rules.
- However, Posner himself told RIA Novosti that he had not been fined in Georgia for violating quarantine rules.
What questions arise with the state?
Elene Khoshtaria and activists say that Posner and his guests left the Rooms Hotel for dinner at Vinotel after 9:00 pm, or curfew, and were escorted by police.
Transferred to Facebook, live format Video footage It is clear that when the protesters came from the hotel “Rooms” to “Vinotel”, several cars were parked near the building, and at least one of them was a police car.
Elene Khoshtaria tells us that the police were gradually gathering on the spot, but no one was in a hurry to respond until she called 112 herself.
“It took about 3 hours to actually stop this dinner. I called the police about an hour later and then it took me another hour and a half to respond. Police stepped in to protect them. Then we managed to turn off the light and this created discomfort and a dead end for them too. They understood that they had to act “- Khoshtaria tells us.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs did not answer the following questions that are of interest to us:
- Did the police know that Posner and his friends left the hotel after 9pm, or the start of the curfew?
- If this fact was known to the police, why did they not stop and fine the Russian guests on the way before they went from “Rums” to “Vinotel”?
- Was there a police car parked near the hotel and why did the policemen on the spot not act before Elene Khoshtaria called 112?
In response to these questions, the Ministry of Internal Affairs is still old statement They sent us.
“If the state had not turned a blind eye, it would have been impossible for those who arrived to break the regulations so easily,” says political scientist Gia Khukhashvili.
“This fact revealed a systemic vice. The main thing is not that Posner visited Georgia. The main thing is what happened after that … Naturally, this could not have happened without the permission of a high level of government.
It seems that too many state institutions have come to serve the informal interest group … It is unfortunate that, as it turned out, the police had to carry out illegal tasks. Too many questions arose. Answers must be given ” – says Khukhashvili.
He considers this fact without national affiliation, but still adds that he can not imagine, for example, a group of law-abiding Germans or Americans who would violate the regulations established in the host country. It is unknown whether the foreigners knew about the regulations here, but if they did not know, according to Gia Khukhashvili, they should have informed the state structures.
They are angry in Russia
The Georgian authorities claim that Vladimir Posner, along with his friends, could not be repatriated because none of them had violated the law on the occupied territories; Also, in accordance with the regulations related to the pandemic, Covid passports and test documents were presented at their border; And when violations were detected, the state even fined them adequately.
On April 1, while talking about this fact, the Prime Minister, Irakli Gharibashvili, accused the opposition, and in particular the “National Movement”, of trying to cause unrest.
“As you know Ours Of citizens One The group Of protest Expression decided, Thus Took advantage of Most Destructive Force, “National Movement” And As They are used to it, Events their Of the day Of order Within Converted. This time too “National Traffic” And In particular Saakashvili The goal Destruction, Sabotage And Ours For the country Maximum Damage Infliction, Ours County International Image Injury…
Altogether Inadmissible was “National Movement” Of leaders And Their Groups Of protest this Form, Which Obviously Goes beyond Civilized Norms And Georgian Standards, We Another Once Make sure, that “National Movement” Formed absolutely Degraded And Radical As a group, With whom Civilized dialog Simply It is impossible“, – Gharibashvili said.
It is true that Moscow was angry with Georgia and Russian tourists once again Warned – Arriving in Georgia is risky; But it is also a fact that the Kremlin was satisfied with the reactions of the Georgian authorities. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov praised the statements made by Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili over criticism of the protesters. Peskov is grateful to the Georgian police for protecting the safety of Russian citizens.
The opposition considers the accusations of the government absurd and calls for the protection of the interests of the state.
Elene Khoshtaria tells us that before the people protested, it would be better not to let Posner and his companions enter Georgia.
“We have many cases when people are not allowed to cross the Georgian border and are sent back. I think that the state should not be allowed to enter here and the state has the appropriate leverage for that.
Posner cannot be considered an ordinary tourist. It is part of Russia’s imperialist, anti-Georgian, governmental system. Otherwise no one will check the personal views of tourists in Georgia “ – The founder of the political movement “Droa” tells us.
Law on the Legal Status of Aliens and Stateless Persons According to Article 11, a border guard may not allow a foreign citizen into the country:
- If his / her presence in Georgia endangers the state security and / or public order of Georgia;
- If, due to foreign policy expediency, his presence in Georgia is unacceptable;
- In other cases provided by the legislation of Georgia.
Recently, under this law, they were refused entry to Georgia without explanation Citizen of Turkmenistan, Aisha Raimova.
Vladimir Posner is mentioned in a number of statements against the territorial integrity of Georgia and the interests of the state. He has said many times that Russia had nothing to do with the 2008 war and that Georgia started the armed conflict.
“He (Saakashvili) was wrong – America did not help, and Russia – answered. It was a military invasion by Georgia, as a result of which Georgia lost Abkhazia forever. Abkhazia will never be part of Georgia again “ – Said Posner in 2010, talking about the 2008 war.