Ajar Supreme Soviet Chairman Aslan Abashidze refused to attend yesterday’s ceremony in Tbilisi, where a monument to his grandfather was inaugurated. President Eduard Shevardnadze had invited Aslan Abashidze to the ceremony in honor of Memed Abashidze, a leading Ajar figure in his time. A large Ajar delegation attended the inauguration. Aslan Abashidze, however, announced publicly in his capital Batumi that the invitation to Tbilisi was a trap meant to assassinate him. He added that he would not even fly his airplane because it may be sabotaged. Abashidze alleged that the “terrorist act” against him is being prepared personally by Georgia’s Parliament Chairman, Zurab Zhvania, “and many senior officials.”
This is not the first time that Abashidze accuses Georgian leaders of plotting to kill him. By focusing on Zhvania and others in the governing party, Abashidze seems to be trying to make them look responsible for the deteriorating relations between Batumi and Tbilisi. But he also seems to take his own charges seriously. Abashidze plans to run for president of Georgia at the next election. He seeks to become the standard bearer of an anti-Shevardnadze coalition whose diverse components range from dogmatic communists to ultranationalist Zviadists to ethnic minority militants.
SUGGESTIONS OF A DEAL BETWEEN PRESIDENT AND PARLIAMENT.