Opposition leaders have warned of permanent protest rallies starting from November 2 if their demands are not met by the authorities.
“This rally [planned for November 2] will not just be a one off protest rally; it will continue unless our demands are met,” Koba Davitashvili, leader of Party of People, said on October 22.
He was speaking on behalf of ten opposition parties, which have teamed up to jointly campaign for parliamentary elections to be held in April, instead of late 2008, as was originally planned before controversial constitutional amendments last year.
The group gave formal notification to the Tbilisi municipality on October 22 of their plans to hold, as Davitashvili said, “a 100,000-strong protest rally.”
In a letter sent to President Saakashvili and Parliamentary Chairperson Nino Burjanadze on October 17, opposition politicians outlined four major demands:
• Holding of parliamentary elections in spring 2008;
• Creation of new election administrations with representatives from political parties;
• Change of the current majoritarian election system – a first-past-the-post, “winner takes all” system;
• Release of “political prisoners” and “prisoners of conscience.”