The Secretary-General of the Council of Europe (CoE) arrives in Georgia
The Secretary-General of the Council of Europe(CoE) Marija Pejčinović Burić has already arrived in Georgia.
According to the Georgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the visit is linked to Georgia’s forthcoming chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers in the CoE.
Marija Pejčinović Burić will hold a meeting with Georgian Foreign Minister Davit Zalkaliani. Talks will be held about bilateral cooperation related issues and future plans.
Presentation of the coin issued in connection with the 70th anniversary of the CoE and the 20th jubilee of Georgia’s CoE membership as well as the action plan of Georgia in the Council of Europe for 2020-2023 will be held within the framework of the visit.
The plan was prepared with active cooperation of the Georgian side and aims at bringing human rights protection, democracy and supremacy of law in line with the European standards.
Secretary-General of the Council of Europe will also hold meetings with Georgia’s Prime Minister, Parliament Speaker, and Head of the Georgian delegation in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE).
Georgian draft law on de-oligarchisation: Supporting the goal of limiting excessive influence of oligarchs, Venice Commission calls for systemic reforms
Strasbourg, 14.03.2023 – In its interim opinion on the draft law of Georgia on de-oligarchisation published today, the Council of Europe’s body of constitutional experts, the Venice Commission, called on the Georgian authorities to adopt systemic reforms rather than targeting specific individuals, in order to achieve “de-oligarchisation”.
“Oligarchisation” is the result of a combination of non-transparent exercise of political power without a political mandate, influence on parliaments, governments, political parties, judiciary and law enforcement bodies; ownership or influence on the media; decisive, if not monopolistic, influence on a number of areas, such as energy, mining, oil and gas, metallurgy, real estate. Eliminating such excessive influence of vested interests in economic, political and public life is a novel and very complex issue.
The Venice Commission noted that while Ukraine was the first country to adopt specific de-oligarchisation legislation, the commitment to eliminate the excessive influence of vested interests in economic, political and public life was also the object of a specific European Commission recommendation to Georgia and the Republic of Moldova. Georgia has since prepared a draft law which is very closely modelled on Ukrainian Law. Each country, however, presents specificities.
The Venice Commission supported the goal of eliminating or at least limiting the influence of oligarchs in political, economic and public life. It highlighted, however, that the choice of the means to achieve such a legitimate goal is of decisive importance if the system is to be effective while respecting democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights. Any such measures should be commensurate to the goal pursued of achieving a level playing field for all actors in society.
The Commission stressed that de-oligarchisation should be ensured through a systemic approach, which has a preventative effect and targets numerous fields, such as legislation relating to media, anti-monopoly, political parties, elections, taxation, anti-corruption and anti-money laundering, etc.
The Georgian draft law instead focuses on a so-called “personal” (punitive) approach, seeking to identify so-called “oligarchs” through specific criteria, such as wealth and media ownership, to publicly label them as “oligarchs” and to subject them to series of blanket limitations that include exclusion from the financing of political parties or activities, exclusion from privatisations of public property, etc. This approach, in the opinion of the Venice Commission, carries high risks of human rights violations and arbitrary application, potentially harming political pluralism. At the very least, the Commission recommended transferring the power to designate a person as an “oligarch” to another body than the Government, removing the broad discretion of the Government in interpreting and applying these criteria and providing strong guarantees for human rights, due process and effective remedies.
The Venice Commission has prepared the current opinion as an interim one, with a view of pursuing its analysis of possible solutions to this matter and taking into account further legislative developments when they are available.
Statement of the MFA of Georgia regarding the arrival of the representative of the occupation regime, A. Bzhaniya, in the Belarus
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) of Georgia condemns the meeting of the President of the Republic of Belarus with the representatives of the occupation regime.
This action blatantly violates the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders and represents an attempt to legitimize the Russian occupation regime.
We call on Belarus to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders and to cease taking the actions, which contradict the fundamental principles and norms of international law.
STATEMENT OF THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS OF TURKMENISTAN
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan condemns the armed attack on the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan in the Islamic Republic of Iran on January 27, 2023, as a result of which there are dead and wounded among the staff of the diplomatic mission.
Turkmenistan declares the inadmissibility of attacks on diplomatic missions and the use of any violence against the personnel of diplomatic departments.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan expresses deep condolences to the relatives and friends of the deceased, and also wishes a speedy recovery to the injured employees of the Azerbaijani Embassy in Iran.
OFFICIAL MEETING MARKING THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF 2023 AS A "INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF DIALOGUE AS A GUARANTEE OF PEACE"
On January 27, 2023, an official ceremony was held at the Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan dedicated to the announcement of 2023 as the “International Year of Dialogue as a Guarantee of Peace”. The event was held in a hybrid format under the conduction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan.
The event was attended by representatives of the main bodies of the UN and its specialized agencies and UN member states, international and regional organizations as well as teachers and students of the higher educational institutions of Turkmenistan.
In their speeches, distinguished diplomats thanked the Government of Turkmenistan for its consistent work to promote a culture of peace throughout the world, noting that this International Year has a solid cornerstone: Dialogue for Peace, based on our common belief that true peace cannot be preserved or restored without a constructive exchange of views in good faith and that such open and sincere interactions can indeed promote mutual understanding between peoples.
2023 was declared the "International Year of Dialogue as a Guarantee of Peace" in accordance with resolution 77/32 of the United Nations General Assembly by the initiative of Turkmenistan. This initiative is directly linked to the "New Peace Agenda" of the UN Secretary General for building peace, which is consonant with the initiative of Turkmenistan to promote the philosophy of "Dialogue as a guarantee of peace".
Before the draft resolution "International Year of Dialogue as a Guarantee of Peace, 2023" was presented, Turkmenistan held extensive consultations with UN member countries, took into account constructive opinions and proposals. The resolution was co-sponsored by 68 member countries of the Organization.
As an official document of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly, under agenda item 14 "Culture of Peace", the final document was adopted, which reflects the fundamental goals and principles of the UN Charter, including obligations to resolve disputes by peaceful means and methods..
The Global Initiative “Dialogue as a Guarantee of Peace” promoted by Turkmenistan is aimed at consolidating the efforts of the international community in strengthening the traditions of peaceful and trusting coexistence of the peoples of the world, restoring values and worldviews, defining a culture of peace and trust as an integral factor in international relations.
Steadily implementing the policy of peacefulness, good-neighborliness and constructive international cooperation, Turkmenistan consistently expands the geography of interested international partnership and takes an active part in the development of balanced solutions to urgent problems of mankind.
Our national development is becoming a model development at the international level in the coordination of the domestic and foreign policies of the President, which are based on the principle of permanent neutrality.
At the end of the ceremony, the participants expressed their sincere gratitude to the Leader of the Nation and the President for pursuing a policy of peace and friendship in international relations and wished them good health and longevity, success in their noble work, for the sake of a happy life for the people, and prosperity for the country.
Statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia strictly condemns the recent visit of Vyacheslav Volodin, the speaker of the Russian State Duma, to Georgia’s occupied Abkhazia region, as yet another violation of fundamental norms and principles of international law by Moscow, the continued infringement on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the sovereign state, and further disregard for international obligations, including for the EU-mediated 2008 ceasefire agreement.
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