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PM Kvirikashvili makes special election appeal

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, June 22
The Prime Minister of Georgia Giorgi Kvirikashvili has made a special appeal to political players, state bodies and the general public prior to the October 8 Parliamentary Elections as election campaigning is launched in Georgia.

Kvirikashvili stressed the importance of adopting the Code of Conduct for Political Parties in the Election Campaign, which must base on a "large-scaled” consensus.

“First, I urge everyone to adopt the Code of Conduct for Political Parties in the election campaign and I hope that all responsible political forces in the country will accede to this document,” the PM said.

“The country’s legislative body is already discussing this issue, which is truly commendable, but it is equally important—and this is one of the purposes of this statement—to ensure wider public consensus based on the principles enshrined in this Code; consensus against coercive methods, hate speech, disrespect for opponents, and violation of human dignity, while promoting respect for different opinions,” he added.

Kvirikashvili also appealed to state bodies and every employee of state institutions to be unbiased in their everyday actions and not to be seen to be favouring one political party or another.

“I urge Georgia’s state agencies and their staff to exercise prudence and caution in all their actions, regardless of their political sympathies, to ensure that such actions do not appear to favour one party or another. It is vitally important to ensure to the full extent equal access to resources. I urge everyone against using administrative resources for political goals," Kvirikashvili said.

He then stressed the strongest point and the advantage of the current Government lay with its attitude toward all political opponents and differing opinions.

This is why it is crucial to maintain this approach and to avoid even the slightest perception of administrative resources being misused by us in any way. We do not need this because we enjoy our people’s support in the first place,” Kvirikashvili said.

On a final note, Georgia's Prime Minister urged the police to "spare no efforts” to ensure order and to "prevent all possible tensions and escalations” during the pre-election and election period.

Special attention must be paid to the regions. The highest possible level of mobilisation of staff is necessary wherever the risks of confrontations are higher. State agencies and institutions are obligated to allow all political forces, especially the opposition, to run their campaigns without any obstacles,” Kvirikashvili said.

PM Kvirikashvili said meetings with voters in the regions had begun and he emphasised the Government would do its utmost to ensure a fair, peaceful and constructive electoral environment.

The United National Movement opposition party said until the Government failed to investigate the by-election clash in western Samegrelo region, which left UNM leaders and other people beaten, the PM’s statement would be just empty words.

The UNM says the clash was organised by the Vice-Premier Kakhi Kaladze.

Head of the Free Democrats party Irakli Alasania said that reaching a consensus on the Code of Conduct was necessary and in Georgian national interests.