Via Pink Armenia we have learned that IGLA-Europe is reporting that Paata Sabelashvili, board member of ILGA-Europe’s Executive Board and a leader of the Inclusive Foundation in Georgia, has been released and is now recovering after nearly two weeks detention.
Martin K.I. Christensen, Co-Chairs of ILGA-Europe’s Executive Boards, said:
“There are a few questions still to be answered by the Georgian authorities. We are concerned that the raid on the office of the Inclusive Foundation which took place on 15 December 2009 was disproportionate and humiliating. We are very concerned with the way the police forces treated the staff of the Inclusive Foundation and with the damage they cause to the office. The other worry is that Georgian police still monitors the office and that other leaders of the Inclusive Foundation, Tinatin Japaridze and Eka Agdgomelashvili, continue to be under police surveillance. We call on the Georgian authorities to immediately end intimidation and any surveillance of the Inclusive Foundation office and its staff.”
The Armenian Gay and Lesbian Association of New York (AGLA NY) is very troubled by the news that Georgian Police have attacked the office of the Georgian LGBT group Inclusive Foundation and arrested the head of the organization, Paata Sabelashvilli (pictured left).
Dedicated to establishing a democratic Georgia, “where sexual orientation and gender self-expression would not be the ground for discrimination,” the Inclusive Foundation is an important voice in the Caucasus, which is still plagued by homophobic public policies and severe brutality against LGBT people in general.
In a statement issued today, ILGA-Europe said it was “shocked” by the conduct of the Georgian police, “which had clearly homophobic motives.” The group called for the immediate release of Mr. Sabelashvili. AGLA NY joins its voice in the international call for the release of the LGBT leader.
“The information we have received from Georgia indicates that the police acted disproportionately and completely ignored basic rule of law. Moreover, we are extremely concerned about the safety of Paata Sabelashvili, who is not allowed any contact with the outside world.”
The following is Inclusive-Foundation’s appeal to the Georgian government and all international organizations. Please circulate this letter to everyone you know.