In Georgia, thousands of demonstrators in the streets after the adoption in second reading of the Parliament of the law on “foreign influence”

Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets on Wednesday May 1 in Georgia to protest against the controversial bill on “foreign influence”, adopted on second reading by Parliament despite weeks of massive mobilization by its detractors

In Georgia, thousands of demonstrators in the streets after the adoption in second reading of the Parliament of the law on “foreign influence”

Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets on Wednesday May 1 in Georgia to protest against the controversial bill on “foreign influence”, adopted on second reading by Parliament despite weeks of massive mobilization by its detractors.

The deputies voted 83 for and 23 against this text which the ruling party, Georgian Dream, wants to adopt definitively by mid-May, despite three weeks of mobilization in the streets of opponents of the bill.

The text must still pass a third reading and Georgian President Salome Zourabichvili, who is in conflict with the ruling party, is expected to use her veto, but Georgian Dream has enough votes to be able to override it.

Protesters gathered in front of Parliament

On Tuesday evening, the police used tear gas and fired rubber bullets to disperse the thousands of demonstrators who had gathered against this text, which is becoming an obstacle to the country's aspirations to join the EU. Waving Georgian and European flags, thousands of demonstrators gathered again in front of Parliament, attempting to block the entrances to the building, noted a journalist from Agence France-Presse (AFP).

If passed, this law would require any NGO or media organization receiving more than 20 percent of its funding from abroad to register as an “organization pursuing the interests of a foreign power.” A first version of the text, inspired by a Russian law used by the Kremlin to repress dissident voices, was abandoned last year after large-scale demonstrations.