14 June, 2012

‘This fall USA is impatiently waiting for free and fair elections in Georgia and democratic transfer of power  in 2013’, - declared Hillary Clinton, US Secretary of State in Batumi. According to her, for democratic processes civil activity, public debates, equal working environment are significant; all these are essentially important for parliamentary elections in Georgia.’ What was stressed by Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State by this declaration? –We started our conversation with Gogi Khutsishvili, Director of International Research Center of

Conflicts and Negotiations with this question:

‘G.K. – Clinton repeated a phrase about transfer of powers that was said by President Obama when meeting with Saakashvili. ‘Transfer of power’ means that when the team in authorities has already covered two cycles it has to transfer power to others but it doesn’t mean that Clinton is predicting something and that the power will be passed on to opposition.
Q. – Giga Bokeria declared that transfer of power takes place every time during elections…
G.K. – This declaration is demagogy. When the authorities have constitutional majority in Parliament talking about transfer of power during elections is a bit awkward.
Q. According to some experts Hillary Clinton told Saakashvili that he has to quit; some underline the fact that the Secretary of State didn’t meet Bidzina Ivanishvili in private.
G.K. –The fact that Hillary Clinton didn’t meet with Bidzina Ivanishvili doesn’t mean that she doesn’t support strengthening of opposition. Simply, Clinton didn’t want to put much emphasis on this and create misbalance in pre-election period.  It would be an undiplomatic step.
Q. - In declarations of the Secretary of State and her deputy Eric Rubin it was quite clearly seen that election environment will be of great significance for legitimization of election results.
G.K. – Election environment doesn’t mean only the day of elections. During the months prior to elections it must be demonstrated that there are equal conditions in mass media and everywhere but this can’t be observed today. Thus the reaction of US will very much depend on pre-election environments. In case they consider that during these months the authorities misused administrative resources, protesting of election results on part of opposition will be more actively supported.
Q. – Again Saakashvili didn’t answer the question whether he’s going to become Prime Minister.
G.K. – The President said that it’s up to the people to decide. There is substantial doubt that he’s planning to become Prime Minister. Saakashvili is hostage of the system created by his team. He won’t leave authorities because this political system is set up to fit one person. Bokeria says they are moving on to parliamentary model. It means collective decision-making, dismantling of one-man decision and verticality. This team can’t afford it because the system will collapse.

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