A Facebook account disseminated an item of information about a statue at Lisi. The publication reads: “These scoundrels yesterday erected an idol of Satan, that is, Molokh (Bafomet, Baal) to whom kids were sacrificed in pagan times before Christianity. In addition, they sent SMS messages to people and invited children to this Satanic ceremony.” In fact, this installation has been standing at Lisi for years and is not related to the Tbilisi Pride Festival.

According to the author of the Facebook post, the Lisi statue is the pagan deity Molokh to whom worshipers sacrificed their sons and daughters (see photos). The post continues: "The second picture depicts a Satanic ceremony that took place across pagan countries before Christianity, the sacrifice of like children to Molokh, delivering new-born children into the hands of a burning metal animal. This idol of Molokh was erected yesterday by the Satanists at Lisi Lake which was destroyed by the Georgian people. Kudos to those Georgians!"

FactCheck reached out to the co-founder of Tbilisi Pride, Mariam Kvaratskhelia, to clarify the issue. During the telephone conversation, Ms Kvaratskhelia emphasised that the statue has been standing on the territory of Lisi Lake for several years and its erection is not related to Tbilisi Pride. At the same time, she stated that the statue stands on a place which was not allocated for the Tbilisi Pride Festival.

One Facebook user wrote in the comments under one of the publications that were made on this topic that the statue actually stands on the Open Air stage, an annual music festival.

Keta Donadze, co-founder of EYESTAGE, explained to Netgazeti that the statue was a decorative installation of one of the Open Air stages (EYESTAGE). According to her, the statue represents an Indian chieftain who has nothing to do with Satanism.

The statue was not created for the Tbilisi Pride festival which is also confirmed by a post published on the official page of Tbilisi Open Air on 23 June. The statue in question is presented in the first photo.

Therefore, the publication’s claim that statue at Lisi Lake was erected by the Tbilisi Pride Festival organisers is false.

Editor’s Note: The article was updated on 11 July 2023. Keta Donadze, co-founder of EYESTAGE, had made clarification with Netgazeti which was added to the article.


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