Protests in Magas, the capital of the Russian Republic of Ingushetia, entered a second day on Friday after a controversial land swap deal with neighbouring Chechnya was approved in a secret vote in the National Assembly. Several MPs in the regional parliament claimed the vote was falsified while the Ingush Constitutional Court declared the deal unconstitutional.
More than 500 people gathered in Nalchik, the capital of Kabardino-Balkaria, on Saturday to protest Russia’s pension reforms raising the retirement age by 5 years for men and 8 years for women. Similar protests took place simultaneously in Kabardino-Balkaria’s second city, Prokhladny, as well as dozens of cities throughout Russia.
Two senior police officers were killed in Azerbaijan’s second city, Ganja, on Tuesday during an anti-government protest. The demonstration was reportedly organised against local mayor Elmar Valiyev, who survived an assassination attempt the previous week.
Around 400 residents of the Daghestani town of Izberbash protested in front of the local mayor’s office on Tuesday, demanding their water access be restored. Houses in the town have been without water for the last three weeks.
Hundreds rallied in front of the government offices and parliament in Ingushetia’s capital Magas on Saturday, demanding the return of direct elections for the head of the republic. The Council of Teips (clans) of the Ingush People tried to obtain a permit to hold the demonstration, but after being denied, decided to go ahead anyway, Caucasian Knot reports. [Read more…]
Tbilisi City Court has indefinitely banned drivers from the Tbilisi Metro from going on strike. Protesters gathered on Tuesday in front of the central Rustaveli Metro Station in support of the drivers, with unions vowing to go ahead with the strike and to take the case to the Constitutional Court. [Read more…]
Georgia’s State Security Service has warned a neo-Nazi group to abstain from using Nazi symbols in public. Small groups of neo-Nazis marched through Tbilisi several times last week, including on 17 May, International Day Against Homophobia, giving Nazi salutes and chanting ‘death to the enemy’. [Read more…]
On 17 May 2013, International Day Against Homophobia, a small group of around 50 queer rights activists were confronted in Tbilisi by thousands of counter-demonstrators led by Georgian Orthodox priests. Demonstrators carried posters with homophobic messages such as: ‘We don’t need Sodom and Gomorrah in Georgia’. The crowds, some carrying nettles to beat queer rights activists with, broke through police lines to attack the activists. Police were forced to evacuate the small number of activists from the city centre. Below is the story of Giorgi Kikonishvili, one of those present. [Read more…]
Georgia’s Interior Minister Giorgi Gakharia has apologised over police raids on two popular nightclubs in Tbilisi. Gakharia met with protest leaders during a rally in front of Tbilisi’s parliament building on Sunday evening. Far-right groups, who have been holding counter-demonstrations against ‘drug dealers and LGBT propagandists’ vowed to continue to protest.
Protest leader Nikol Pashinyan has called for fresh parliamentary elections in Armenia, following the resignation of Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan. Sargsyan stepped down after an 11-day campaign of street protests and civil disobedience against his rule.