Georgian police detains opposition leader

2021-02-23 08:05:57 GMT2021-02-23 16:05:57(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

TBILISI, Feb. 23 (Xinhua) -- Georgian police detained the leader of the opposition party United National Movement at the request of the Tbilisi City Court on Tuesday.

Georgia's Ministry of Internal Affairs said in an announcement that the arrest of the party's Chairman Nika Melia abides by a decision by the Tbilisi City Court on Feb. 17.

The ministry called on political parties and their supporters to "protest in a peaceful manner, refrain from violent actions and not to obstruct the representatives of the police in the execution of the court decision."

Melia was detained at the party's headquarters in Tbilisi. Before the operation, police evacuated the building, where opposition party supporters had been defending Melia for several days.

Tbilisi City Court has ruled that Melia remain in custody for failing to post bail per the request of the Georgia's Prosecutor's Office.

The Georgian Parliament on Feb. 16 suspended Melia's parliament member status, allowing the prosecution to demand his arrest. Melia was charged with leading riots and protests back in June 2019. Enditem