Amnesty International assesses Georgia’s response to COVID-19
29 April, 2020
Amnesty International assesses Georgia’s response to COVID-19
The response of governments in Eastern Europe and Central Asia has ranged from the introduction of strict measures to stop the spread of the virus to official denial, official report by Amnesty International says. The report reviews actions taken by the Georgian government, saying that Georgia enacted state of emergency measures that were necessary and proportionate and motivated by legitimate public health objectives. “Instead of authorising a broad scope of emergency measures, the Presidential decree on state of emergency5 included an
exhaustive list of rights that were derogated from, and specific measures when such derogation was possible.”

But the report accuses the government in a double standard saying “concerns were raised that certain anti-Covid-19 measures were applied in a discriminatory fashion.” Amnesty report makes comparison between the Georgian Orthodox Church and the Muslim community in Georgia.

“Contrary to medical advice, religious gatherings have not been restricted by law largely to ensure that the Georgian Orthodox Church could conduct liturgies for Orthodox Easter. During Palm Sunday and Easter celebrations on 12 April and 19 April in Georgia, several Orthodox churches hosted dozens of worshippers. All other religious groups in Georgia have voluntarily agreed to close their places of worship to the public. On 15 April, the head of the muslim community of Georgia, Mirtaghi Asadov, declared that when Ramadan begins, they will also open mosques and expect that the government will treat them with the same understanding as they have shown to the Orthodox church. Two days after this statement, Mirtaghi Asadov was summoned for questioning to the State Security Service of Georgia in connection with an attempt to “sabotage” the state” – reads the report.

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