Senior MP says Georgian police, locals get along fine in multiethnic district

Kavkasia-Press news agency
30 Jun 05

Tbilisi, 30 June: The chairwoman of the Parliamentary Human Rights and
Civic Integration Committee, Elene Tevdoradze, has reported to MPs on
her yesterday's visit to Tsalka District [in southern Georgia with a
large ethnic Armenian population]. Tevdoradze went to Tsalka because
of the recent [shooting] incident [followed by protest rallies]. She
said that she had met all the parties concerned, including MP for
Tsalka District, Ayk Meltonyan.

According to Tevdoradze, "there was a clash between two Armenian
villages in Tsalka, after which Meltonyan himself called the [Georgian
Interior Ministry's] special-purpose detachment and the situation
calmed down". As regards the shooting incident, Tevdoradze said that
the prosecutor's office was investigating the case. Elene Tevdoradze
noted that the special-purpose detachment was working very well. "The
local population is pleased and they want the special detachment to
stay," she said.

"Local residents told me that members of the special detachment do
not walk around drunk or fire guns without reason as it was alleged
by [opposition] New Right MP Manana Nachqebia at a recent meeting of
the parliament's bureau," Tevdoradze said. She thanked the Interior
Ministry for "adequately providing the lads with food, uniforms and
all necessary equipment".