The Georgian Parliament proposed on Oct. 5 amending a law that would strengthen restrictions on protests and public gatherings, including setting up tents or stages for speakers.
Although the text of the proposed law emphasized that it "is not a bill aimed at restricting gatherings and demonstrations," Caucasian news outlet Jam-News cited a number of sources that said the law is an attempt to clamp down on the right to free assembly.
Sponsors of the bill alleged that the changes were necessary to prevent a "Ukrainian Euromaidan" type scenario, building upon a previously reported theory that Ukraine would try to assist in overthrowing the Georgian government sometime in Oct-Dec.
Ukraine's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Oleh Nikolenko strongly denied the allegations.
The tent law was proposed by members of the ruling Georgian Dream party, under Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili, which has been criticized as being pro-Russian.
According to Jam-News, the bill has already been called "another Russian law," similar to the so-called "foreign agents law" which drew massive public backlash and demonstrations in March 2023 before it was ultimately withdrawn.
A post on Instagram by the Georgian news outlet Formula.Ge indicated that protests against the tent law had already begun in front of the Georgian Parliament shortly after news of the proposed amendment became public.