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1 Sep, 2008 15:04

Anti-Russian protesters take to Tbilisi streets

In Georgia's capital Tbilisi, 100,000 protesters have crammed into the city’s main avenue as part of an anti-Russian demonstration.

Hand-holding protesters formed human chains in an echo of the Baltic Chain of 1989, in which residents of then-Soviet Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia stretched the length of their homelands to protest against Soviet occupation. Echoing the Baltic example, some demonstrators waved Estonian and Lithuanian flags.

Organisers called on European leaders meeting in Brussels to condemn Russia's actions.

Georgia hopes Europe will impose sanctions against individuals associated with the separatist movements in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Demonstrators draped themselves with Georgian flags and one group burned a Russian passport as a sign of protest.

Human chains proclaiming “Stop Russia” were also planned in Baku, Barcelona, Jerusalem, Kiev, Madrid, Sofia, Warsaw and Vienna, said Georgian government spokeswoman Nino Imedashvil .