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Over 20 remain in Georgian hospitals after Tbilisi riots - health ministry

They are undergoing the last examinations and most of them are preparing to be discharged

TBILISI, June 23. /TASS/. At least 23 out of 240 injured during mass riots outside Georgia’s parliament on June 20 continue undergoing treatment in Tbilisi’s hospitals, Deputy Health Minister Zaza Bokhua told reporters on Sunday.

"By now, some 23 patients are in various clinics. They are undergoing the last examinations and most of them are preparing to be discharged. They will leave hospitals today or tomorrow," Bokhua said.

Meanwhile, two people remain in serious condition. "We are carrying out full monitoring, we are also holding consultations with our colleagues from different countries," he said.

Events in Tbilisi

On June 20, several thousand protesters gathered near the building of the national parliament in downtown Tbilisi, demanding the resignation of the interior minister and the parliament’s speaker, and tried to storm it. In response, police used tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannons to disperse the demonstrators. Some 305 demonstrators were detained.

The protests were sparked by an uproar over a Russian State Duma delegation’s participation in the 26th session of the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy (IAO). On June 20, IAO President Sergei Gavrilov opened the session in the Georgian parliament. Opposition lawmakers were outraged by the fact that Gavrilov addressed the event’s participants from the parliament speaker’s seat. In protest, they did not allow the IAO session to continue. Media reports claimed that Gavrilov had allegedly participated in combat actions in Abkhazia and Transnistria, although he dismissed this as fake news.

The General Assembly was wrapped up on June 20 and later the Russian parliamentarians flew to Moscow. According to Gavrilov, after the session the delegation members were attacked when they were talking to journalists and threats were voiced against them. On June 21, Georgian Parliament Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze tendered his resignation amid protests.

The protests are still ongoing, with demonstrators demanding the resignation of the interior minister, holding parliamentary elections on a proportional representation and releasing the detained rioters.