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Ex-president reburied in Georgia as patriot

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Ex-president reburied in Georgia as patriot


Thousands have turned out in Tbilisi to pay tribute to Zviad Gamsakhurdia, the controversial figure who led Georgia to independence.

The country’s first post-Soviet president, he died over a decade ago. His remains have been moved several times.

Most recently found in a grave in the Chechen capital Grozny, the ex-leader’s body was brought back to Georgia for reburial in a pantheon.

Among those paying their respects today was Georgia’s President Mikhail Saakashvili.

Under Gamsakhurdia’s brief rule at the start of the 1990s, Georgia was plunged into chaos and civil war. Critics blame Gamsakhurdia, claiming he was a divisive nationalist.

After being ousted in a military coup, he died in disputed circumstances. Many believe his death in 1993 was suicide but supporters say the single fatal bullet found in his temple was fired by his enemies.

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