A criminal case has been launched
The Georgian Interior Ministry has instituted criminal proceedings in connection with recent Facebook comments containing gang-rape threats, made by organizers of ‘Georgians march’ against Tatia Dolidze, the ex-representative of Georgia’s youth delegation to the United Nations.
The case received a wide public resonance. It has been actively discussed on Facebook, on TV and in printed media for two days already.
Tatia Dolidze’s Facebook post, in which she slammed the ‘Georgians march’ idea, filled the organizers with indignation.
The march organizers verbally abused her using obscene language and threatened to sexually assault her.
However, shortly after that, the post with its’ subsequent comments was deleted, with the organizers denying their involvement in such discussions, claiming that some fake accounts had been created.
Meanwhile, Georgian Interior Ministry launched a probe into the case under Article 151 of the Criminal Code of Georgia. A person charged for issuing death threats or inflict bodily harm, or damage personal property, may be either imposed a fine or sentenced to 120-180 hours of community service or corrective labor, or to 1-year imprisonment. The Interior Ministry’s press service hesitated to answer the question about the frequency of cases launched under Article 151. Such cases haven’t been reflected in the MoI’s 2016 statistical data either.
Georgian Ombudsman, Ucha Nanuashvili, called on the Georgian Interior Ministry to investigate the incident in a timely and thorough manner. He believes that hate speech against women will further aggravate the situation with gender equality in the country.
The Women’s Movement issued a special statement, suggesting that Mass Media should boycott those individuals involved in the incident. The movement expects them to apologize for their statements, as well as expects an adequate response by government officials regarding the incident.
“It’s a shame when those who rallied with the demand to protect Georgian women against foreigners, openly issue harassment threats the next day,” said Baia Pataraia, a movement member.
The ‘Georgians march’ event was held in Tbilisi on 14 July. The nationalist-minded organizers of the march demanded toughening the rules for migrants staying in Georgia. The march organizers frequently use their personal FB pages for making homophobic and racist remarks, addressed to march opponents.