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Georgia: Political Opposition Confronts Credibility Gap

This story was updated on 4/27/09 to clarify CRRC survey results.

What opposition leaders touted as "the final epoch" in their protest campaign to drive President Mikheil Saakashvili from power seems to have stalled before it got started. As a result, opposition leaders can expect to start facing questions about their own political futures in the coming days and weeks. But for now, they seem to be in a state of denial.

A permanent protest in Tbilisi has seen a steady decline in attendance since it got underway on April 9. [For background see the Eurasia Insight archive]. Opposition leaders attempted to re-energize the movement with a much publicized effort to bring in a supposed legion of supporters to Tbilisi from surrounding regions. But promised huge protest crowds failed to materialize. On April 23, for example, a modest gathering of about 1,000 milled around the empty street in front of the parliament building.

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Georgia: Political Opposition Confronts Credibility Gap

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