March 16, 2022
Georgian Government Launches Constitutional Dispute Against President Salome Zourabichvili
By Khatia Bzhalava
According to the statement of the [ruling] Georgian Dream Political Council, the President has violated the Constitution, which needs to be confirmed by the Constitutional Court. The president of Georgia criticized both the ruling party and the opposition in her report. The Georgian government is launching a constitutional dispute against Salome Zourabichvili. The Georgian Dream has issued a statement saying that the president has been criticized for ‘violating the constitution’, including for the recent visits to Paris and Brussels.
“The Government of Georgia is forced to apply to the Constitutional Court in the near future within the framework of the dispute over the competencies of the competence and to request confirmation of the violation of the Constitution by the President of Georgia.
According to the Constitution, the President of Georgia can conduct international negotiations and exercise representative powers only with the consent of the Government.
In violation of this constitutional reservation, without the consent of the Government of Georgia, the President of Georgia, as she herself admitted at yesterday’s sitting, made several visits to different countries. It should also be noted that these visits were planned by the President without any prior consultation with the Government and the Government was informed of the visits only after that, confirming that the President had intentionally violated the Constitution.
“We have taken care of the institution of the president and have not made this fact public, however, now that the president herself has made it public, we consider it necessary to have a political response to it,” the Georgian Dream stated.
In the statement, Georgian Dream reminded the President “that the rules of the state system are not determined by the President but by the Constitution, and no one can allow the President to change the Constitution”.
Besides, the statement reads that the President over the past year on multiple occasions refused to appoint an ambassador or diplomatic representative nominated by the government, which, according to the GD political council, is ‘grossly’ contrary to the Constitution of Georgia.
Yesterday, March 14, after the President’s speech in the Parliament, the Chairman of the Georgian Dream, Irakli Kobakhidze, said that if Salome Zourabichvili told the truth about her visit to Europe without the consent of the government, she had violated the Constitution and “they will find out.”
“If what the president said is true, it turns out that she violated the constitution, we will find out,” Kobakhidze said.
The President of Georgia, Salome Zourabichvili, in her speech to the Parliament, said that on February 26 she received a written refusal to pay working visits to Paris, Berlin, Brussels, and Warsaw.
According to Zourabichvili, she was forced to use personal contacts.
US Ambassador to Georgia Kelly Degnan praised the Georgian President’s address to Parliament, underscoring that ‘the president’s speech was excellent’. According to her, the President had a very clear and strong message. The ambassador noted that Zourabichvili’s speech was a reflection of the desire to bring help to the Ukrainian people, and at the same time to bring unity to Georgia through cooperation, compromise and dialogue.
March 16, 2022
After the 2008 war, the Georgian authorities at the time did not impose sanctions on Russia either – Irakli Kobakhidze
Our position on the imposition of sanctions is unchanged. We reiterate that Georgia will not join the sanctions imposed on Russia. Such a statement made today the Chairman of the Georgian Dream.
“First of all, we once again express our solidarity with the Ukrainian state and the Ukrainian people fighting against Russian military aggression. We would like to reaffirm our position regarding the sanctions.
As it is known, the “Party of War” in the form of the National Movement does not dare to speak openly about the imposition of sanctions and the desire to involve Georgia in the military conflict. However, all of their provocations are aimed precisely at this. It is their obvious goal for the authorities to make extremely harmful decisions for the Georgian state and its people, impose economic sanctions, and involve the country in war, which will have dire consequences for Georgia and its people.
It should be noted that in the past few days, their foreign lobbyists have also become actively involved in the UNM’s provocative campaign in terms of sanctions. Over these days, television stations belonging to the UNM covered several statements by such lobbyists, calling on the Georgian authorities to join the sanctions.
In this regard, we would like to remind you that after the Russia-Georgia war of 2008, not a single state in the world imposed sanctions on Russia….
Despite all this, after the 2008 war, the Georgian authorities at the time did not impose sanctions on Russia either. Moreover, the authorities of Georgia under the UNM introduced a visa-free regime for Russian citizens, partially in 2010 and fully in February 2012. Since 2012, under our government, trade and economic relations with Russia have been expanded. No one has made any critical remarks about any of these decisions by the previous or current authorities.
It was clear to everyone that the steps taken by the authorities only served the interests of our own country and population, including the hundreds of thousands of our citizens living in Russia and the occupied territories.
Given our special attitude toward the Ukrainian people, naturally, our solidarity with Ukraine is of a special nature. However, it is unclear how they can demand the imposition of sanctions in response to the ongoing Russian military aggression in Ukraine, when the Georgian authorities have not done so even after the occupation of their own country.
We once again call on the “Party of War” in the form of the UNM to kindly speak openly if they support the imposition of sanctions, instead of resorting to covert agitation, staging provocations, and hiring foreign lobbyists.
We reiterate that by imposing economic sanctions, the authorities of Georgia will not be able to harm Russia in any way, while this would be a major blow for Georgia and its population. Therefore, we would like to emphasize once again that our position concerning the imposition of sanctions remains unchanged, and no one will be able to change our position on this issue through provocations, covert campaigns, or foreign lobbyists. We reiterate that Georgia will not join the sanctions imposed on Russia.
In parallel with the political and humanitarian support of Ukraine, the authorities of Georgia stand guard, in a principled and uncompromising manner, over the interests of the Georgian state and the Georgian people,” said Irakli Kobakhidze.