US wants regime change in Georgia – Russian intel

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Washington is preparing major protests in the former Soviet republic, Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service believes

The US is looking to achieve regime change in Georgia by fomenting large protests around the time of the parliamentary election in the former Soviet republic later this year, Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) has claimed.

Relations between Washington and Tbilisi deteriorated after Georgia passed in May the so-called foreign agents law, which required NGOs, media outlets, and individuals that receive more than 20% of their funding from abroad to register as entities “promoting the interests of a foreign power” and disclose their donors. The country’s pro-Western president, Salome Zourabichvili, vetoed the legislation but was overridden by the ruling Georgian Dream party.

The SVR’s press service said in a statement on Tuesday that information obtained by the agency “indicates Washington’s strong determination to seek regime change in Georgia as a result of parliamentary election in the country on October 26.” 

The administration of US President Joe Biden has “already prepared a large-scale information campaign to discredit the Georgian Dream party,” it stressed.

“The American ‘curators’ have already given the command to the opposition forces in Georgia to begin planning protests in the country to coincide with the election,” the agency said.

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The population of the country’s capital, Tbilisi, the scene of heated rallies against the foreign agents law earlier this year, is going to be used as a “battering ram” against the Georgian Dream government, it added.

According to the SVR, the US expects Zourabichvili to become a key figure in igniting the protests in the country of some 3.7 million.

In line with a plan by “the directors in Washington,” the president will give an interview to a US media outlet in which she will “blame the Georgian government for the degradation of the negotiations on Tbilisi’s accession to the EU, and warn the general public about the ‘catastrophic consequences of rapprochement with Moscow,’” the statement read.

ourabichvili’s role will be to prepare the Georgian public for a “political surprise” from the opposition, which might eventually turn out to be another Western-backed color revolution, the agency warned.

Last week, the US announced the suspension of this year’s Noble Partner military exercise with Georgia due to a “comprehensive review” of bilateral relations by Washington. The Biden administration previously voiced plans to restrict visas for Georgian politicians who supported the foreign agents law.

On Monday, the EU said that it has put on hold the process of Georgia’s accession to the bloc and froze a €30 million ($32.5 million) payment allocated to the Georgian Defense Ministry.


READ MORE: US scraps military drills with NATO hopeful

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze said earlier that the heightened attention of the West towards the foreign agents law is attributable to the desire to open “a second front” against Moscow in Georgia in light of the Ukraine conflict.

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