A big protest was held in Tbilisi on Saturday to demand harsh punishment for a girl accused of defacing a spiritual icon depicting Josef Stalin which was recently-installed within the Georgian capital, as tensions over the incident remained excessive.
The lady is alleged to have splashed paint on the icon, which was on show within the metropolis’s major Holy Trinity Cathedral, on Tuesday in an act of protest that uncovered deep divisions in Georgia over the previous Soviet dictator’s legacy in his homeland.
1000’s of Orthodox believers and supporters of the Alt-Information pro-Russian ultra-conservative motion gathered on Saturday in entrance of the nation’s parliament earlier than matching by way of town within the course of the cathedral.
The gang – noticed by the police – was addressed by a speaker complaining in regards to the assault on the icon. A Reuters reporter estimated the group to be as much as 3,000-strong.
A Georgian nationalist social gathering, known as the Alliance of Patriots, which has additionally expressed pro-Russian views, mentioned it had gifted the icon to the cathedral.
A aspect panel of the icon features a depiction of the Georgian-born Stalin – an avowed atheist who violently repressed faith throughout the Soviet Union – being blessed by St Matrona of Moscow, a Russian Orthodox saint, throughout World Battle Two.
The police opened an investigation into “petty hooliganism” and questioned the girl who had broken the icon.
However some Orthodox Church activists and believers need the girl, who has been named in Georgia media, to be topic to a prison investigation and be probably jailed for what they are saying was an act that insulted the icon and their beliefs.
In addition they need the legislation which offers with such incidents to be made harder, in line with native experiences.
Flowers have been positioned by the icon on Saturday as believers lined as much as kiss the a part of it depicting Stalin.
Some Georgian media shops have reported that Orthodox activists had beforehand tried to storm the girl’s house in Tbilisi, however have been prevented by the police.