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Political wing of Georgian far-right Alt Info group de-registered as party

8 April 2024
Alt Info leaders at the 13 January demonstration in Tbilisi. Photo: Mariam Nikuradze/OC Media.

The political wing of the far-right and pro-Russian extremist group Alt Info, the Conservative Movement, has been de-registered by Georgian authorities.

On Monday, Georgia’s National Agency of Public Registry cancelled the Conservative Movement’s registration on a technicality. According to registry records, the party’s conference failed to formalise the charter they renewed in December 2021, resulting in the revocation of their 7 December vote to register as a political party. 

The Public Registry said they decided to revisit their 2021 decision upon a request from the Anti-Corruption Bureau five days earlier. Since its establishment in November 2022, the bureau has met scepticism, with anti-corruption groups questioning its independence given it reports directly to the prime minister’s office. 

[Read more on OC Media: ‘These are not reforms!’: Georgia’s proposed anti-corruption agency comes under fire]

The move comes as the government has come under a barrage of criticism from the West over its planned foreign agent law.

Georgia’s investigative services have in the past ignored repeated calls to probe Alt Info for their repeated use of violence against queer people, activists, and journalists.

Such calls, including from Western countries and institutions such as the EU, intensified after Alt Info successfully thwarted a queer pride march in Tbilisi in July 2021. 


Calls to refuse them to register as a party, including from the Public Defender, also went unheeded. After organising and leading a violent mob that attacked government critics, their offices, and reporters in 2021, Alt Info was able to obtain a national broadcasting licence for their namesake TV channel. The channel has since broadcast hate speech on a regular basis.

In July 2023, Alt Info were again successful in thwarting a queer event in Tbilisi, as police did not deploy force to prevent them. Photo: Mariam Nikuradze/OC Media.

The move to deregister Alt Info also comes as the ruling Georgian Dream party has itself taken a strong conservative and anti-Western turn, including proposing their own homophobic legislation.

Rumours of a rift between the Government and Alt Info emerged in 2023, coinciding with some Alt Info supporters alleging that the ruling party had decided to appropriate their ultra-conservative and anti-Western messages.

In late January, the State Security Service searched the flat of a popular far-right blogger associated with Alt Info, Beka Vardosanidze, and questioned him for hours for his alleged connection to bomb threats. At that time, Alt Info had already claimed for months to be experiencing financial hurdles, including a hefty $87,000 fine purportedly imposed in 2022. 

Earlier this month, one of the leaders of Alt Info, Zura Makharadze, was charged for a violent altercation in the western city of Zugdidi in March. Makharadze was released on ₾5,000 ($1,870) bond while the trial is pending.