9 April …remembering 9 April 1989…when Soviet troops attacked Georgian demonstrators with clubs and sharpened spades. The clashes left 20 people dead, mainly young women.
9th April 1989. The Berlin Wall was still standing, the Ceausescus were still breathing and events in Tbilisi which included hunger strikes reached a climax. The events of 9 April 1989 were the culmination of weeks of demonstrations for Georgian independence and against separatism of Abkhazia.
The demonstrations were mostly peaceful. At their peak, about 10,000 people are estimated to have been present.
Minutes before 4am on 9 April, General Radionov told his troops, who had been requested by Jumber Pastiashvili, first secretary of the Georgian Communist Party, to clear the square, in front of the Georgian government building, on Rustaveli Avenue, by all means available. The Soviet troops attacked the demonstrators with clubs and sharpened spades. The clashes left 20 people dead, mainly young women.
An hour before the attack the Georgian Patriarch, Ilia II, begged the crowds to leave the Square.
A year later…
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