Georgian airlines, which resumed flights to Russia, announced a boycott of the country’s president
Georgian Airways will not allow Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili to travel on its planes after she criticized the decision to resume air travel to Russia. This was reported by representatives of the carrier, quoted by TASS.
The airline said in a statement: “Mrs Salomé has announced a boycott of the national airline. We declare her persona non grata until she apologizes to the Georgian people, we will not let her on board.”
Earlier, Zurabishvili called on citizens to stop using Georgian Airways services. She accused airlines of using public funds for personal gain, as previous regimes had done.
On May 20, the first Georgian Airways flight landed at Moscow’s Vnukovo airport after a four-year break. The resumption of flights sparked protests in Georgia. Hundreds of people gathered near Shota Rustaveli Airport with posters reading “Russia is a terrorist state” and “Russian airship is going to ***”. The protests ended with the arrests of activists.
Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the ban on flights of Russian airlines to Georgia from May 15 and at the same time lifted the visa regime for Georgian citizens. The Georgian president called his decision a “provocation” that would cause “political tensions” and proposed the introduction of a visa regime for Russian citizens.
In addition to Georgian Airways, flights to Georgia will be operated by Russian airlines Azimuth and Red Wings. In Russia, planes will be picked up in Moscow and Sochi, in Georgia – in Tbilisi, Kutaisi and possibly in Batumi.