‘Foreign agents’: Georgia withdraws bill after massive uprisings

'Foreign agents': Georgia withdraws bill after massive uprisings

Foreign agents Georgia withdraws bill after massive uprisings

The Georgian government is backing down. Thursday, March 9, the ruling party in Georgia announced that it was withdrawing its bill targeting NGOs and the media. The project aimed to oblige these organizations to register as “foreign agents”, under threat of a fine. Since Tuesday, massive protests rocked the country and were harshly repressed.

“As a party of government responsible to every member of society, we have decided to unconditionally withdraw this bill that we support”, the Georgian Dream party said in a statement posted on its website. The day before, a new demonstration had resulted in the use of tear gas canisters and water cannons by the police.

On Tuesday, the bill passed its first reading. He planned to create the denomination of “foreign agents” for all media – and also NGOs – as long as at least 20% of their funding came from abroad. In the event of non-compliance with this law, these organizations risked being fined. For its critics, this text is inspired by a similar law that exists in Russia where the Kremlin uses it to repress the independent press, human rights organizations and their opponents.

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