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Who is favored in PACE resolution?

By Messenger Staff
Friday, October 3
The resolution of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) has created much debates both in the council and among Georgian politics. The section related to Georgia’s democratic institutions was a major topic.

The adoption of the resolution on October 1 was preceded by a controversy concerning several notes in the text. There was a demand regarding the withdrawal of the document as well, but the attempt failed. The demand was raised by reporter Michael Jansen. This was because of several amendments in the document. The amendments concerned the informal running of the country by Bidzina Ivanishvili, the pre-trial detention of former Defense Minister Bacho Akhalaia and the exclusion of political influence in the case of former President Mikheil Saakashvili. Jansen stated that he was against several amendments, including the one about the founder of the coalition Bidzina Ivanishvili. He believed that the government could get advice both from the former prime minister or the president.

Member of the United National Movement Giorgi Kandelaki claims that the current government did its best to remove unfavorable notes from the resolution text. According to him, the Georgian Dream government even tried to influence the reporters.

The adopted version appeals to the government to change Akhalaia’s pre-trial detention to a precautionary measure. The resolution also reads about alleged political persecution of Mikheil Saakashvili, former Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili and former Tbilisi Mayor Gigi Ugulava, as well as the seizure of their properties. CoE did not take the UNM note into account regarding Ivanishvili’s informal leadership in the country.

Members of the Georgian Dream are not pleased with the resolution. They think that the current text of the resolution is the result of joint efforts of the UNM and its supporter – the European People’s party. The Georgian Dream members suggest that the resolution depicts only recommendations and it is up to the current government whether it meets the recommendations or not.

Unlike the government, the UNM is pleased with the document. MP Goka Gabashvili states that the Ivanishvili-Gharibashvili government suffered a serious failure.

“None of the amendments set by the government’s delegation was supported. All the information reflected in the text is essential for the country’s democratic advancement. There are serious concerns about political persecutions,” Gabashvili says.

Member of the coalition Tedo Japaridze states that it was in the interests of the opposition to include certain names in the document and they reached this aim. However, he stated that there was nothing tragic in the issue.

“This is a message for our government that we should work better in terms of certain issues,” he said.

Fellow MP Irakli Chikovani thinks that the resolution is controversial.

“There are very few cases in CoE history when the reporters of the resolution do not support its text,” Chikovani says. Co-reporters of the resolution Michael Jansen and Boris Silevich stated that the resolution should have illustrated more about Georgia’s achievements during the last two years.

It appears that the Georgian Dream team should have performed better in Strasburg. This round was won by the UNM, but as some analysts suggest, this fact will eventually backfire on the UNM. The Georgian Dream government and law enforcement bodies will do their best to prove quickly the guilt of former leaders providing more convincing evidences.