Rasmussen was “extremely concerned” But...
15 November, 2012
Rasmussen  was “extremely concerned” But...

‘He Noted that NATO Will Trust and Understand All of the New Government’s actions‘

 

Since NATO Secretary General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen was “extremely concerned” over recent arrests of “political opponents” of new government in Georgia, PM Bidzina Ivanishvili offers NATO Secretary General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, to send a team to Georgia that would monitor ongoing investigation into criminal charges brought against former defense minister and two former senior army commanders.

 

 

 

Former defense and interior minister Bacho Akhalaia, as well as chief

of army staff Brig. Gen. Giorgi Kalandadze and former commander of 4th army brigade Zurab Shamatava were arrested and charged with abuse of soldiers. Kalandadze and Shamatava were released on bail and Akhalaia, who also faces other charges too involving illegal confinement, was remanded in pre-trial custody pending investigation. Brig. Gen. Kalandadze was suspended from office through court’s ruling.

President Saakashvili’s United National Movement (UNM) condemned the arrests as launch of “political retributions” by the new authorities against the representatives of previous administration. But the new authorities say that the arrests were part of a campaign of “restoring justice” by investigating alleged wrongdoings by former senior officials.

Speaking at a meeting of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Prague on November 12, NATO Secretary General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, said, after he was asked about Georgia, that he appreciated the way October 1 parliamentary elections were conducted and added that Georgia passed “a litmus test when it comes to democratic development.”

He said that he also appreciated the way how transfer of power took place following the elections. “So far so good,” he said.

But Rasmussen also added: “No reason to hide that I’m extremely concerned about the development we have seen since then [the elections and transfer of government], not least related to recent arrests of political opponents in Georgia.”

“Well, I am not going to interfere with judicial system in Georgia. It’s for the legal system, the judicial system in Georgia to sort out these cases. But of course it’s important that such trials are not undermined by political interference,” he said and added that NATO would follow developments “very closely.”

Georgia’s PM Bidzina Ivanishvili, who is now visiting Brussels, plans to meet NATO Secretary General on November 14, according to the Georgian Foreign Ministry.

Meanwhile, President of European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso, who met PM Ivanishvili on November 12, called on Georgia’s new government, without mentioning any specific case, to avoid “situations of selective justice.”

President Saakashvili, who is in Prague where he attended the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and met with the NATO Secretary General, said on November 12 that the recent arrests, especially the one of the army chief of staff, harmed Georgia’s NATO integration process and “thwarted” NATO Military Committee’s visit to Georgia.

“It is of course very unfortunate that the Secretary General was very critical. I actually do not remember NATO having a critical tone about Georgia in recent years and I can barely recall NATO having such a critical tone towards any country,” Saakashvili said in televised remarks.

He said that he did not think the new government carried out these arrests “intentionally” to harm Georgia’s NATO integration, but was rather a result of the new authorities’ “inexperience”.

“If only they had waited for at least few weeks… I really can’t understand why these hasty decisions were needed,” Saakashvili said.

Saakashvili said that the way how elections were conducted with consequent power transfer, created an opportunity for Georgia for making “a big leap forward” in terms of NATO integration. He said that despite recent developments NATO should anyway give Georgia “at least some positive signals” in terms of integration process when NATO foreign ministers meet in December.

“My message to the Secretary General was that [recent developments] should not in any way stop Georgia’s progress towards NATO. Governments and presidents will come and go in Georgia, but we should definitely join NATO,” Saakashvili said.

“Despite these developments, NATO-Georgia Commission meeting at the level of foreign ministers should any way be held and there should be some kind of progress; the NATO Military Committee should definitely visit [Georgia] at some point. Yes there will be questions asked, but the Georgian people’s [interests] should not be harmed because of someone’s inexperience or because of anyone’s some other intentions,” he said.

Saakashvili also said that by meeting with former chief of  staff Kalandadze in the presidential palace after his release on bail and by instructing him to continue performing his duties, he wanted to send a message to the new government about the need “to put this incident aside.”

“But unfortunately they did not use this chance,” Saakashvili said.

After this meeting between Saakashvili and Kalandadze on November 10, chief prosecutor’s office filed a motion to the court requesting suspending Kalandadze from the office on which the Tbilisi City Court ruled positively next day.

“I think that we should all understand this [NATO integration] should not be an issue for wrangling between the President and the government; this is vitally important for Georgia to be part of this Alliance. It should not be a matter of political confrontation,” Saakashvili said.

Saakashvili also said that he welcomed that PM Ivanishvili was now visiting Brussels and added that such visits would help the new government in gaining more experience.

“I think these [visits] will give him [PM Ivanishvili] more information on many issues and will be useful for him and it will help each member of this government to see Georgia’s interest more clearly,” Saakashvili said.

 

 

 

Panjikidze, who accompanies PM Ivanishvili on his visit to Brussels, made the remarks after NATO Secretary General said on November 12 in Prague that he was “extremely concerned about the development we have seen since [the elections], not least related to recent arrests of political opponents in Georgia.”

“We hed a meeting [with NATO Secretary General] on November 14 and we responded to all the question. All the developments surrounding this issue are fully transparent. That’s the message Mr. Ivanishvili voiced during the meetings [with EU officials] here today and he also said that we are ready to [receive] a NATO team - if NATO has such practice, which will monitor closely and study how the investigation is ongoing,” Georgia’s foreign minister said.

PM Ivanishvili said in an interview with Channel 9 TV from Brussels late on November 12, that “real chance of joining NATO emerged after we came into power.”

Ivanishvili said that NATO Secretary General’s remarks were “normal and very good”.

He said that there would be no selective justice in Georgia. “I assured Mr. Rasmussen about it when we meet” on November 14, Ivanishvili said.”And I offered him to set up some kind of a working group, which would follow these developments, which the previous authorities were trying to portray as a political retribution and injustice.”

Ivanishvili also said that the fact in itself that “we had to arrest chief of army staff was alarming.” “That’s a shame for the country,” he added.

 

 

 

NATO doesn’t consider it necessary to set up a working group to study the situation in Georgian army and declares trust to the new government of Georgia, Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili said in Brussels during the joint press conference after meeting Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

“We both expressed concern over the developments in Georgia. I mean the detentions. I offered the Secretary General to take part in this process to make everything transparent and understandable. Mr. Rasmussen declared trust in us; he noted that he will trust all our actions. This was his position on the issue”, Bidzina Ivanishvili said.

Georgia’s Prime Minister said that the meeting was interesting and many other issues were discussed. Ivanishvili says the meeting highlighted that Georgia passed a very important test by 1 October elections.

“It was a very interesting message to the international commonwealth and NATO member states. We were promised by Mr. Rasmussen that in the foreign affairs Ministerial planned for December, there would be a good emphasis on this and it will be noted that Georgia passed a big test”, the Prime Minister said.

Ivanishvili expressed concern over the postponed visit of NATO military committee, though the Secretary General promised him that the visit will take place in Georgia. Ivanishvili invited the members of the North Atlantic council to Georgia, which will “strengthen our integration with NATO”, he said.

Georgia’s Prime Minister underscored at the joint press conference that NATO is a political structure too and promised that the new governmetn will do everything to strengthen democracy of institutes of the new government.

“We’ll do everything to truly develop democratic institutions. The problems created several days ago, I think it was linked with the former government, instead of building truly democratic institutes, was confined to facade expressions and there was not enough transparency for the public including the army units. Georgia’s new team will do everything to make all our actions understandable to the international commonwealth and NATO. We’ll do everything to achieve the goals, to manage to become a NATO member state in near future”, Ivanishvili said, who also thanked Rasmussen and NATO structures for the help they give to Georgia.

 

Print
Other Stories
Judges that served the violent regime of Saakashvili should not be in the Supreme Court, says Eka Beselia
Eka Beselia, a member of the parliamentary majority, held a press conference in the Parliament today.
Possible confrontation within the Georgian Dream Party?
Eka Beselia, a member of the ruling party, will hold a news conference in the Parliament at 12:00 today.
13 dead from swine flu in Georgia, emergency treatment to be free for all
13 people died from swine flu in Georgia so far, but there is no risk of epidemy, says Georgian Minister of Health.
Georgian president Salome Zurabishvili not ready for launching diplomatic dialogue with Russia
I'm not ready to give any advice to the legislative body about the launch of the diplomatic relations or dialogue with Russia
Georgia suffering the steepest drop in democratic quality in eastern Europe
According to the statistics for the Democracy Index 2018, published by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU),
“Let’s see if you can wrestle with women”- Interior minister to the opposition
Female Police officers were mobilized in front of the Gurjaani District Court where the case of Davit Kirkitadze, the member of the United Opposition was considered.
Georgian citizens can apply for temporary residency in France
150 permits for young specialists as well as additional 500 permits will be granted each year to go to work to France.
Numbers of Georgians seeking asylum in Germany has significantly decreased
According to Ambassador of Georgia to Germany Elguja Khokrishvili, the drop of asylum requests has been due to recently taken steps.
U.S. Congress supports Georgia with a new bill
Unanimously the U.S. approved the act, which calls for imposing sanctions on Russian actors for the commission of serious human rights abuses in the occupied Georgian territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
‘Horn wrestling’ between opposition party leader and police chef
Yesterday on the 16th of December, clashes occurred between Nika Melia, leader of the United National Movement and Teimuraz Kupatadze, head of patrol police department in the village of Velistsikhe, Kakheti region (eastern part of Georgia).
Salome Zourabichvili officially becomes the fifth president of Georgia
The inauguration ceremony of president-elect Salome Zourabichvili took place in Telavi, Kakheti (eastern region of Georgia) on the 16th of December.
Fight erupt in paliament between Georgian MPs during session
Verbal and physical confrontation has occurred between MPs in the parliament.
Famous Georgians invited at the Inauguration of Salome Zourabichvili
The inauguration ceremony of president elect Salome Zourabishvili will be held in Telavi, Kakheti (eastern region of Georgia) on the 16th of December.
Exclusive interview with Lincoln Mitchell, American political analyst and Georgia expert
More than 20,000 people responded to the appeal of the opposition and gathered in front of the former parliament building in downtown Tbilisi last Sunday.
The after-pains of the presidential election in Georgia
Yesterday evening, at a meeting with his supporters in the Philharmonic Hall, the defeated candidate Grigol Vashadze made it clear that he didn’t recognize the result of the presidential elections and called for early parliamentary elections.
National democratic institute publishes their findings about the presidential elections in Georgia
A delegation of the National Democratic Institute, which included observers from five countries, analyzed the election process.
International media about the runoff presidential elections in Georgia
Although it didn’t hit the headlines, newspapers and broadcast around the world report about Salome Zurabishvili as the first woman who became president in Georgia.
100% of the ballot counted: Salome Zourabichvili wins
Yesterday on the 28th of November, the second round of the presidential election took place in Georgia.
Salome Zurabishvili was elected as president of Georgia
According to the CEC, Central Election Committee of Georgia Salome Zurabishvili, an independent candidate endorsed by the ruling Georgian Dream Party, received 59.61 percent of votes.
Preliminary results of runoff election for president in Georgia and clashes in Marneuli
Preliminary results for runoff election for president in Georgia have been announced.
Exit polls say Salome Zurabishvili won runoff election for president in Georgia
Runoff elections for president are over in Georgia. Voting booths were closed at 8 pm Tbilisi time. Some exit polls have already been published.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs about the shooting in Chumlaki
Today on the 28th of November, the second round of the presidential election takes place in Georgia.
Second round of presidential elections in Georgia
Georgians head to the polls for a runoff election for president. The first round was held on the 28th of October,
The 15th Anniversary of Georgia’s Rose Revolution
15 years ago, in 2003, the rose revolution took place in Georgia.
Unprecedented move by Cartu Group to nullify debts for 600 000 Georgian citizens
The Prime Minister of Georgia Mamuka Bakhtadze announced on the 19th of November that the bank debt of over 600,000 Georgian citizens, including those on a so-called ‘Black List’ will be annulled.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
21.01.2019
22.01.2019
USD
1
USD
2.6629
2.6613
EUR
1
EUR
3.0368
3.0283
GBP
1
GBP
3.4463
3.4211
RUB
100
RUB
4.0103
4.0074
Other Stories
On 26 May, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, joined celebrations in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi
Violation of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by Assad regime has been strictly criticized
Exactly one year ago, Georgia was granted visa-free travel with the European Union.
Georgia’s ex-president president Mikheil Saakashvili's supporters managed to free detained Mikheil Saakashvili in the center of Kiev.
The US Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly congratulates Georgia on Independence Day.
The regulations on the introduction of visa-free travel for citizens of Georgia have been officially signed in Brussels.
The entire Georgia is involved in Secret Santa game, which means that people are sending gifts to each other secretly
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia is taking part in NATO Ministerial underway in Brussels, Belgium.
A special squad has been mobilized at the 48th polling station in Marneuli, Kvemo Kartli region.
Two politicians in Georgia have come to blows during a live TV debate ahead of the country’s parliamentary elections, Euronews reports.
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.6613
EUR
1
EUR
3.0283
GBP
1
GBP
3.4211
RUB
100
RUB
4.0074
January 2019
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31