Pressure remains on Georgian President

The Georgian president remains under pressure from thousands of protesters, despite rejecting calls for him to resign. Around 5,000 opposition followers remain around the parliament building in Tbilisi in the hope that early elections will be called.

One of the opposition parties has suggested holding a referendum on whether the election should be in autumn or spring 2008.

Four protesters, including a member of parliament and three opposition leaders, have declared a hunger strike until their demands are met.

Earlier on Monday,  a live ‘corridor of shame’, consisting of shouting people with banners, was made near the Ministry of Interior Affairs, and each Ministry worker had to pass through it.

Saakashvili reaction

On Sunday, President Saakashvili gave his first interview since the rallies began.

He didn’t even mention the possibility of stepping down, ruled out early elections and accused Russia and what he called “evil-minded forces” of having a hand in the protests.

“We are facing a situation when there will be elections in Russia, elections in Georgia and Kosovo and Abkhazia. A confrontation in Abkhazia could have started before the elections. All of this was planned to put Georgia in a hard situation before the elections,” he added.

On another issue which some protesters have raised, the President did say he was willing to look at changing some regulations that govern the election process. Saakashvili also stressed that people who took part in the rally had the full right to do so according to the law.