07TBILISI2463, COURT OF APPEALS CONFIRMS OKRUASHVILI DETENTION

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07TBILISI2463 2007-10-02 12:37 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Tbilisi

VZCZCXRO4375
PP RUEHAG RUEHAST RUEHDA RUEHDBU RUEHDF RUEHFL RUEHIK RUEHKW RUEHLA
RUEHLN RUEHLZ RUEHPOD RUEHROV RUEHSR RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHSI #2463/01 2751237
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 021237Z OCT 07
FM AMEMBASSY TBILISI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7805
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 TBILISI 002463 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EUR DAS BRYZA AND EUR/CARC 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM GG
SUBJECT: COURT OF APPEALS CONFIRMS OKRUASHVILI DETENTION 
 
REF: A. TBILISI 2437 
 
     B. TBILISI 2452 
     C. TBILISI 2415 
 
1. (U) Summary: The Tbilisi Court of Appeals rejected an 
appeal of former Defense Minister Irakli Okruashvili's two 
month pre-trial detention on October 1.  Okruashvili's lawyer 
called it an "illegal decision" and said she would file a 
case in the European Court of Human rights in Strasbourg. 
Former State Minister for Conflicts Resolution Giorgi 
Khaindrava announced that the eight parties involved in the 
September 28 protests met on October 1 and will make a joint 
statement, expected to include a demand for early elections. 
The opposition New Rightists party, which did not join the 
protests last week, called on Parliament to establish a 
special commission to probe Okruashvili's allegations against 
Saakashvili.  Ruling party MP Giga Bokeria dismissed the 
possibility of such a commission.  Bokeria and Deputy Speaker 
of Parliament Mikheil Machavariani both refuted Russia's 
criticisms of Georgia's developing democracy.  Bokeria also 
criticized Georgian businessman, and sometimes critic of the 
government, Badri Patarkatsishvili for holding an interview 
with the Russian daily, Kommersant.  End Summary. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ----- 
Okruashvili Stays in Prison, Lawyer Decries Ruling 
--------------------------------------------- ----- 
 
2. (U) On October 1, Irakli Okruashvili appealed his two 
month pre-trial detention ordered by the Tbilisi City Court 
on September 28 to the Tbilisi Court of Appeals.  The Court 
of Appeals affirmed his detention.  His lawyer, Eka Beselia, 
called the ruling an "illegal decision" and said she would 
bring a case in the European Court of Human Rights in 
Strasbourg.  Beselia cited several irregularities in the 
lower court's action.  First, the state-appointed public 
defender is still acting as Okruashvili's defense lawyer, 
despite the fact that he can afford a private attorney and 
does not want the public defender to represent him.  Second, 
Beselia complains she was not allowed into Okruashvili's 
questioning.  Third, the defense had no opportunity to read 
the protocol prior to the hearing; the judge just read them 
at the hearing. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ------------- 
Opposition Announces Presentation, Calls for Investigation 
--------------------------------------------- ------------- 
 
3. (U) Former State Minister Giorgi Khaindrava, one of the 
most outspoken leaders of the September 28 protests, 
announced that the eight opposition parties met on October 1 
and will soon make a joint public statement on the situation 
in Georgia.  Without specifying, he said "We have agreed on 
all the issues.  Tomorrow we will hold a presentation of our 
campaign and inform society about our plans."  The parties 
are expected to once again challenge Okruashvili's detention 
and demand early parliamentary elections. 
 
4. (U) The opposition New Rightists party, which did not join 
the protests last week, called on Parliament to establish a 
special commission to probe Okruashvili's allegations against 
Saakashvili.  Party lawmaker Mamuka Katsitidze said such a 
commission "will either result in the President's impeachment 
or in the refutation of the accusations leveled against him." 
 National Movement leader and MP, Giga Bokeria, rebuffed the 
New Rightists' suggestion, saying the General Prosecutor will 
investigate the facts and take appropriate action. 
 
------------------------------------------- 
Both Ruling Party and Opposition MPs Reject 
Russian Comments on Georgian Democracy 
------------------------------------------- 
 
5. (U) Deputy Speaker of Parliament Mikheil Machavariani and 
Bokeria both refuted Russian officials' recent, multiple 
criticisms of Georgian democracy.  In response to a statement 
by the Russian Duma, which condemned the anti-democratic 
policy of Georgian authorities and supports the Georgian 
opposition, Machavariani said "it is cynicism when the 
country which has toppled democracy adopts statements of this 
kind."  MP Katsitidze of the New Rightists added, "We really 
have problems with democracy, with human rights.  But Russia 
is not a state which has a moral right to point to us about 
it." 
 
------------------------------------ 
Patarkatsishvili Speaks Up, a Little 
------------------------------------ 
 
6. (SBU) Georgian businessman and opposition figure, Badri 
 
TBILISI 00002463  002 OF 002 
 
 
Patarkatsishvili, gave an interview to the Russian newspaper 
Kommersant on September 27, two hours after Okruashvili's 
arrest.  Patarkatsishvili said he and Okruashvili meet every 
two or three months and share the same views, particularly on 
the unification of the country.  Patarkatsishvili encouraged 
the creation of an independent commission to investigate PM &#x
000A;Zhvania's death, and he offered his support to the 
opposition.  In response, Gigi Bokeria, remarked in a 
televised interview that Patarkatsishvili's comments 
supporting Okruashvili demonstrate his preference for a weak 
government that can be more easily influenced.  Bokeria said 
the Russian government frequently demands Patarkatsishvili's 
extradition, but said Georgia would never extradite him to a 
country like Russia.  He stressed that the President has 
never taken such a step to get rid of Patarkatsishvili. 
Georgian television station Rustavi-2 aired a report on 
October 1 suggesting the re-emergence of Okruashvili could be 
linked to Patarkatsishvili's intent to increase his political 
activity.  Patarkatsishvili's deep pockets would be welcome 
to Okruashvili and most other opposition politicians.  This 
is a development the Government has feared for some time, and 
has reportedly tried in different ways to head off. 
 
TEFFT

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