MEETING OF SHALVA PAPUASHVILI WITH PRIME MINISTER OF ARMENIA
The Speaker, H.E. Shalva Papuashvili met with the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, H.E. Nikol Pashinyan.
The sides emphasized the friendship and cooperation between Georgia and the Republic of Armenia.
As was noted, given the security risks and challenges in the region, it is important that the relationship between the state institutions of the two countries be close.
The meeting was held within the framework of the official visit of the Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia to Armenia.
The Georgian delegation is composed of Giorgi Volski, Sozar Subari, Samvel Manukyan, Sumbat Kiureghian, Elguja Gotsiridze, and Khatuna Samnidze.
Secretary Blinken’s Trilateral Meeting with Azerbaijan and Armenia
The below is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken hosted Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan and Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov for the first direct talks since recent fighting. Secretary Blinken conveyed condolences for the lives lost and emphasized the need to prevent further hostilities, underscoring the importance of returning to the peace process. They discussed next steps, and the Secretary encouraged the sides to meet again before the end of the month.
TURKMEN-ARMENIAN POLITICAL CONSULTATIONS WERE HELD AT THE MFA OF TURKMENISTAN
On September 13, 2022, political consultations were held in Ashgabat between the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan and the Republic of Armenia. The Turkmen delegation was headed by Deputy Foreign Minister V. Hajiyev, and the Armenian delegation - by Deputy Foreign Minister M. Safaryan.
After exchanging greetings, the parties noted the friendly character inherent in the Turkmen-Armenian relations. During the meeting, the parties discussed in detail the key aspects of bilateral cooperation in the political, trade-economic and cultural-humanitarian spheres.
The high level of cooperation within the framework of international and regional organizations, primarily the UN, was stated. The consistent support of the Armenian side for the foreign policy initiatives of Turkmenistan put forward on international platforms was noted.
The parties noted with satisfaction that this year marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Turkmenistan and the Republic of Armenia, and in this regard, it was proposed to hold a number of events dedicated to this date.
Diplomats also noted the positive dynamics in the development of trade and economic relations. In this context, the readiness of Turkmenistan to discuss the prospects for cooperation in all areas, including the fuel and energy sector, was noted.
At the end of the talks, the parties discussed issues of expanding cultural and humanitarian cooperation and stated that there are great opportunities for the further development of relations in various areas.
THE NINTH MEETING OF THE INTERGOVERNMENTAL TURKMEN-ARMENIAN COMMISSION FOR ECONOMIC COOPERATION WAS HELD IN ASHGABAT
On September 13, 2022, the building of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Turkmenistan hosted the ninth meeting of the Intergovernmental Turkmen-Armenian Commission for Economic Cooperation, co-chaired from the Turkmen side - by the Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers Sh. Abdrakhmanov, from the Armenian side – by Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructures of the Republic of Armenia Gnel Sanosyan .
The agenda of the meeting, which was also attended by heads and representatives of a number of ministries, departments and business entities of the two countries, included a wide range of issues related to the implementation of existing agreements between the two countries.
The progress of the implementation of the agreements reached following the eighth meeting of the Commission, held in Yerevan in March 2017, was discussed.
The parties noted that the export of products from the oil and gas, agricultural, food and textile industries of Turkmenistan to the Republic of Armenia will contribute to the development and strengthening of trade relations between the two countries. The sides also agreed to help increase the volume of trade between the two countries and expand the range of exported goods by establishing contacts with the participation of the business circles of the parties and organizing meetings.
The sides also expressed interest in strengthening contacts in the field of industry, transport, construction, architecture, agriculture, as well as in the fuel and energy sector.
The parties also spoke in favor of deepening contacts in the fields of science, culture, sports, tourism, education, healthcare and developing cooperation in the field of the media, which are an effective mechanism for diversifying mutually beneficial partnerships.
The members of the Commission emphasized the need for regular bilateral meetings, consultations and negotiations aimed at further strengthening the constructive dialogue in the interests of the two countries.
As a result of the work of the Intergovernmental Turkmen-Armenian Commission for Economic Cooperation, a relevant protocol was signed.
THE SPEAKER SIGNED THE DRAFT CHANGES TO THE CRIMINAL CODE OF PRACTICE
“There are no legal or expediency arguments that can impede the enactment of the hereof Law and hence, I signed the Law”, - the Speaker, Shalva Papuashvili stated at the extraordinary briefing speaking about the process of the development of the Law and the Presidential veto.
He underlined that similar to Mme. Zourabichvili, who had no legal remarks concerning the Law, nor Venice Commission detected incompliance of the draft with the ECHR standards.
“As you may know, the President used her right of veto to the hereof Law on June 23, calling it a political veto and thus, underlining the fact of absence of the legal remarks towards it, however, she considered the adoption thereof as politically inexpedient due to the criticism by certain groups concerning the pace of the consideration of the hereof Law and the engagement of the parties concerned. Subsequently, the President addressed the Venice Commission appealing to provide their opinions regarding the Law. On August 26, the Venice Commission promulgated its opinions regarding the Law. Similarly to the Presidential veto, the Venice Commission failed to detect any contradictions to the European or international standards on human rights. At that, Venice Commission, based on their interviews with certain actors in Georgia, reiterated the opinion about the pace of the adoption of the Law and the engagement of the parties concerned. I hereby provide the perception, which has been unfortunately attempted to establish towards the hereof Law”, - he stated.
As the Speaker elucidated, the initiators have not required expedited consideration of the draft initiated on April 13, 2022, and hence, the draft has been under standard consideration procedure.
“Moreover, providing the particular interest to the Draft and based on the appeal of our partners, the consideration has been extended for 3 weeks. Eventually, the Parliament adopted the Law with the III reading in 2 months upon the initiation and providing the overcoming of veto, the Law has been adopted in 5 months, which has nothing in common with an expedited manner; All relevant state agencies, all NGOs concerned, and all international actors have been engaged in the initial consideration so in the overcoming of veto. The Draft has been under consideration not only in the Committees but at the Working Group meetings, including with the EU experts online. Every party enjoyed the opportunity and enough time to submit their contextual remarks concerning the incompliance of the Draft with any of the European or international human rights standards. You can find zero groups concerned capable of stating that despite their will to participate in the consideration, they lacked this opportunity, which has nothing in common with non-inclusiveness”.
The Speaker underlined that even 5 months after the initiation of the draft, no contextual remarks have been made that could put the compliance of the draft with any human rights standards under doubt. “On the contrary, the discussions with the local groups concerned or the international actors revealed that the hereof Law is in full compliance with the practice of the European Court of Human Rights. The consideration of the veto confirmed the absence of the answer to the reiterated question to specify the human rights standard that the hereof Law is in breach thereto”, - he noted.
The only opinion expressed concerns the expediency of the adoption of the Law, he added: “pursuant to Article 36 of the Constitution of Georgia, the Parliament is the supreme legislative body determining various directions of state politics, including the creation of the respective legal base in view of the higher efficiency of investigative actions. Hence, the issue of expediency of the adoption of the Laws is attributed to the exclusive competence of the Parliament. In sum, it took 5 months in the Parliament to discuss the hereof issue and on September 6, the Parliament ultimately confirmed its decision. Thus, there are no legal or expediency arguments that can impede the enactment of the hereof Law and hence, I signed the Law”.
EBRD President to visit Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia
The President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Odile Renault-Basso, will tour the Caucasus next week, from 12 to 16 September, to meet senior government officials and business clients and partners. She will first visit Azerbaijan, then Georgia, before finishing in Armenia.
This is her first in-person visit to the region since assuming office in late 2020.
Prior to her departure, the EBRD President held virtual meetings with a diverse group of Azerbaijani, Georgian and Armenian civil society representatives.
In Baku, in addition to important meetings, the EBRD President will sign the agreement for the Bank’s second Green City project in Azerbaijan and launch a joint project with AzPromo, the national investment promotion agency, aimed at stimulating the telecommunications, media and technology sector in the country.
In Tbilisi, Odile Renault-Basso will hold different meetings and sign loan agreements with long-standing partners in the financial and healthcare sectors.
The EBRD President will conclude her trip in Yerevan, where she will meet Armenia’s political leadership and the EBRD’s partners. Renaud-Basso will also visit the Centre for Creative Technologies (TUMO), where she will meet leaders of Armenia’s hi-tech sector, and attend celebrations for the 15th anniversary of the EBRD-supported Investment Council of Armenia.
“I am very much looking forward to visiting the Caucasus, where the Bank has achieved some remarkable results during its 30 years of operation. Despite its size, the region remains an important investment destination for us, one where we have already invested more than €10 billion,” said Renaud-Basso prior to her visit.
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