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26 May, 2008 10:29

10,000 Georgians rally over 'rigged' poll

Ten thousand people have converged on central Tbilisi, less than an hour after Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili presided over Independence Day celebrations. A stage was destroyed and protesters shouted as they vented anger over the results of last w

The opposition intends to boycott parliament and is urging other parties to do the same.

A military parade was held in Tbilisi earlier on Monday. Servicemen and reservists have marched through the capital’s main avenue. President Mikhail Saakashvili made a passionate speech in front of the crowd. Polish President Lech Kaczynski was the guest of the event.

The protesters gathered near the parliament after the parade.

The situation started becoming tense as the oppositionists began shouting at the audience attending the parade.  

Than a group of 500 to 1, 000 protesters destroyed the stage on which Saakashvili had been speaking. The police have not retaliated so far but they look ready to prevent the crowd from breaking into parliament.

President Saakashvili’s party won a resounding victory in the elections last week.