Dozens of Demonstrators Against the ‘Foreign Influence’ Law in Tbilisi Arrested

Authorities in Tbilisi, Georgia, late Tuesday arrested dozens of demonstrators following clashes with riot police during a demonstration against a proposed law accused of targeting freedom of the press.

Police were seen using tear gas and water cannon outside government buildings in dealing with demonstrators who opposed the proposed law which some see as stifling freedom of the press.

The law, which has already received pre-approval, will require media and NGOs that receive more than 20 percent of their funding from overseas sources to register as “foreign agents.”

Although Georgian president Salome Zurabishvili has said he will veto the bill, its drafters say the legislation is necessary for transparency of the activities of entities financed by representatives of foreign countries. Parliament can override a presidential veto. [uh/ab]

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