Joint Declaration from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Georgia and Portugal

Published in Politics
Friday, 27 May 2022 15:18

On the 23rd of May 2022, we celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic relations between Georgia and Portugal. Throughout these three decades, our countries have much benefited from fruitful bilateral relations, grounded on common interests and the shared values such as freedom, respect for human rights, democracy, the rule of law, effective multilateralism and the rules-based international order, also translated into enhanced people-to-people contacts.
We cherish our friendship, through which Georgia became closer to the Lusophone world, namely, by acquiring status of associated observer at the CPLP. The fruitful activity of the Portuguese Center “Camoes” at Tbilisi State University is another concrete demonstration of aspiration for the closer ties to the Lusophone culture. 
Based upon the value-based partnership, Portugal reaffirms its strong support for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders, the non-recognition policy and the peaceful conflict resolution efforts by the Government of Georgia.
The recent opportunity of keeping bilateral political dialogue vibrant between our countries has been the meeting of the two Ministers of Foreign Affairs in Marrakesh on the 11th of May.
Cooperation and friendship between Georgia and Portugal are not limited to the bilateral level. Our two countries have a long history of mutual support in international organisations, mainly in the realm of the United Nations. Cooperation in the frames of the EU is enhancing, in both bilateral and multilateral domains, especially against the backdrop of current geopolitical changes and Georgia’s EU membership aspirations. Georgia’s EU membership application is recognised as country’s legitimate right to choose its own destiny. We remain committed to supporting a strong, independent and prosperous Georgia in its way towards alignment with the EU. Georgia is one of the NATO’s closest partners and Portugal supports Georgia’s reform efforts and its goal of Euro-Atlantic integration.
The special occasion that we now commemorate represents not only a reason to celebrate, but a valuable moment to show our mutual commitment to broadening and deepening our bilateral agenda in the political, economic and cultural domains, for the benefit of our peoples and the prosperity of our countries.

MFA of Georgia

Declaration by the Committee of Ministers on the COVID-19 pandemic

Published in World
Thursday, 23 April 2020 14:56

David ZalkalianiPresident of the Committee of Ministers and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Georgia, has expressed his satisfaction following the Committee of Ministers’ adoption of a Declaration on the COVID-19 pandemic.

"During this very difficult time we are living through, I am pleased that the 47 member States of the Council of Europe have agreed on the need to continue to co-operate to fight the pandemic together, without ever losing sight of the Organisation's values and standards," he said.

The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, in which all of its 47 member States are represented, expresses its deep sadness at the suffering and bereavement caused in Europe and elsewhere in the world by the COVID-19 pandemic.

It expresses its profound gratitude to all those who, at the risk of their own health, are fighting to overcome this terrible disease and bring relief and care for those who are seriously ill. It also expresses its deep gratitude to all those who continue to work in order to ensure that people’s basic material needs can be met.

The COVID-19 pandemic is the worst health crisis since the Organisation was founded in 1949, and authorities at all levels must do their utmost to protect people's health in all circumstances, including the most vulnerable members of our societies.

The challenge we face today is unprecedented. The Committee of Ministers recalls its deep and constant attachment to its core values of human rights, democracy and the rule of law, as expressed in the Statute of the Council of Europe and the European Convention on Human Rights. It also recalls that measures to combat the disease and its wider consequences must be taken in accordance with the Organisation's principles and the commitments entered into by member States. The Secretary General’s information document on “Respecting democracy, rule of law and human rights in the framework of the Covid-19 sanitary crisis: a toolkit for member States” provides useful guidance in this respect.

The Committee of Ministers considers that solidarity and co-operation between States is essential to deal effectively with the pandemic, and underlines that the Council of Europe, including its Development Bank, will continue to make every effort to assist its member States during this crisis and its aftermath.

State of Emergency declared in Georgia

Published in Politics
Saturday, 21 March 2020 15:42

Georgia has declared the state of emergency starting today till April 21 in connection with the situation over the novel coronavirus in the country – Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia announced.

Prime Minister has already applied to President. Declaration of state of emergency requires approval of the parliament, which will hold the extraordinary sitting later this afternoon.

Georgia confirmed three new cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) bringing the total number of the infected individuals to 47 – reads the information posted on the special web-page stopcov.ge created by the government of Georgia.

According to the latest data, 1966 remain under quarantine, while 251 under hospital supervision. Only one patient recovered from the virus.

https://1tv.ge/en/news/state-of-emergency-declared-in-georgia/

Chairmanship Declaration on the results of the First Caspian Economic Forum

Published in Economics
Thursday, 15 August 2019 15:32

On August 11-12, 2019, the First Caspian Economic Forum was held in Turkmenbashi city, Turkmenistan.

        Various international events were organized in the framework of the Forum, on the outcomes of which the following was stated:

        The role of the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea signed by the Heads of States of Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, the Russian Federation and Turkmenistan on the results of the Fifth Caspian Summit held in the city of Aktau, Kazakhstan on August 12, 2019 which creates the conditions for the advancement of cooperation between the Caspian region to a qualitatively new partnership level was underlined;

Recognized that the Agreement between the Governments of the Caspian Littoral States on Trade-Economic Cooperation and the Agreement between the Caspian Littoral States on Cooperation in the field of Transport contribute to further strengthening and development of collaboration between the littoral states in the economic sphere;  

Noted that the Caspian Economic Forum platform can become a vital form of cooperation aimed at providing economic growth in the region and beyond its borders;

The necessityof increasing the potential in the area of trade and investment policy, as well as easing the trade process and export supplies potential for the benefit of trade and investments in the Caspian region is highlighted;

It is recognized that the countries of the Caspian region and all the stakeholders, including the private sector, associations and academic circles can maintain active dialogue on the issues of leading practice and measures related to the implementation of goals for ensuring development of economic contacts;

The significance of active participation and assistance on the part of international and financial institutions in the development of international economic cooperation in the Caspian was stated;

The need to unite the efforts for the attainment of considerable potential of the Caspian littoral states’ economic sectors was accepted;  

Based on the above-mentioned, the implementation of the following actions is recommended:

 

  1. Take the necessary steps for the enhancement of attractiveness of the Caspian littoral states’ economies with the aim of further active integration of the Caspian region in the international economic space.
  2. Encourage the attraction of investments and stimulate innovations in the energy, industry, transport, trade and other spheres of the Caspian littoral states’ economies.
  3. Ensure further strengthening of regional cooperation in such areas as social and economic development, environment protection, science and innovations, exchange of economic information.
  4. Strengthen cooperation and coordination between the Caspian region and the United Nations’ system, including the regional UN commissions.
  5. Hold the Caspian Economic Forums on regular basis in the littoral cities of the Caspian states.

 

The participants of the Forum expressed gratitude to the Government of Turkmenistan for high-level organization of the Frist Caspian Economic Forum and hospitality shown. 

 

                                Turkmenbashi city, Turkmenistan

August 12, 2019

“From a victim of war to the leader of peace”

Published in World
Tuesday, 21 May 2019 10:32

6th Annual Commemoration of the Declaration of World Peace and the Peace Walk is Held in a Global Scale

In May this year, marking the 6th Annual Commemoration of the Declaration of World Peace, about 70 countries host various citizen-participating events and peace walk. This event is aimed to mobilize a worldwide network of youths and citizens to spread a culture of peace in respective communities and to urge for the cooperation for building sustainable peace in the global society. Especially, Seoul in South Korea, where the Declaration of World Peace was proclaimed, will have the commemoration on May 25th.

With 30,000 youths from all over the world present, the Declaration was announced on 25 May, 2013 by an international peace NGO called Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL) in Special Consultative Status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and associated with the UN Department of Global Communications (DGC).

Chairman Man Hee Lee of HWPL, a war veteran, stated the background of proclaiming the Declaration. "We cannot claim to desire peace and continue to provoke one another, causing conflict for the sake of valuing our own national interests above those of others. This will only take the lives of the youth, wasting them in the futility of war. This is not a legacy we can leave to future generations."

The Declaration addresses the value of shared effort of all members of society as they work as peace messengers. It includes principles such as that the heads of each state to sign an international agreement—a commitment to bring all wars to an end, that all youth to unite in an effort to stop wars and pursue the restoration of peace, and that the media to report responsibly and promote a message of peace to the world.

Such values from the Declaration led to drafting the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War (DPCW) as an advanced designation of global responsibility to establish a legally binding international legal framework for peace. This year’s event will be focused on the “Peace Letter Campaign” led by the International Peace Youth Group (IPYG), an affiliated youth organization of HWPL. The campaign is aimed to urge for the support of the heads of each state to develop it into a legally binding document by submitting it as a resolution to the UN.

According to the official of HWPL, the foundation of the DPCW is to build a world of peace secured by the rule of law that is based on the universal values including coexistence, cooperation, and mutual respect. The 10 articles and 38 clauses with the settlement of a dispute and measures for sustainable peace address the international cooperation at the governmental level as well as the role of individual of the global society to achieve peace.

At the commemoration of this year, the participants will call for the replies against the heads of state for the peace letters that have been already sent to them and the messages of peace written by citizens will be delivered to high-level officials of governments and international organizations in 193 different countries.

70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Published in World
Monday, 10 December 2018 15:01

Statement by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet

Geneva (6 December 2018) - On 10 December, we mark the 70th anniversary of that extraordinary document, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

It is, I firmly believe, as relevant today as it was when it was adopted 70 years ago.

Arguably even more so, as over the passing decades, it has passed from being an aspirational treatise into a set of standards that has permeated virtually every area of international law.

It has withstood the tests of the passing years, and the advent of dramatic new technologies and social, political and economic developments that its drafters could not have foreseen.

Its precepts are so fundamental that they can be applied to every new dilemma.

The Universal Declaration gives us the principles we need to govern artificial intelligence and the digital world.

It lays out a framework of responses that can be used to counter the effects of climate change on people, if not on the planet.

It provides us with the basis for ensuring equal rights for groups, such as LGBTI people, whom few would even dare name in 1948.

Everyone is entitled to all the freedoms listed in the Universal Declaration "without distinction of any kind such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status."

The last words of that sentence – "other status" – have frequently been cited to expand the list of people specifically protected. Not just LGBTI people, but also persons with disabilities – who now have a Convention of their own, adopted in 2006. Elderly people, who may get one as well.  Indigenous peoples.  Minorities of all sorts. 
Everyone.

Gender is a concept that is addressed in almost every clause of the Declaration. For its time, the document was remarkably lacking in sexist language. The document refers to "everyone," "all" or "no one" throughout its 30 Articles.

This trailblazing usage reflects the fact that, for the first time in the history of international law-making, women played a prominent role in drafting the Universal Declaration.

The role of Eleanor Roosevelt, who chaired the drafting committee is well known. Less well known is the fact that women from Denmark, Pakistan, the Communist bloc and other countries around the world also made crucial contributions. 

Indeed it is thanks primarily to the Indian drafter Hansa Mehta, that the French phrase "all men are born free and equal," taken from the Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen, became in the Universal Declaration "all human beings are born free and equal." 

A simple but – in terms of women’s rights and of minority rights – revolutionary phrase. 

Hansa Mehta objected to Eleanor Roosevelt’s assertion that "men" was understood to include women – the widely-accepted idea at that time. She argued that countries could use this wording to restrict the rights of women, rather than expand them. 

Born out of the devastation of two World Wars, the Great Depression of the 1930s, and the Holocaust, the Universal Declaration is geared to prevent similar disasters, and the tyranny and violations which caused them. It sets out ways to prevent us from continuing to harm each other, and aims to provide us with "freedom from fear and want."

It sets limits on the powerful, and inspires hope among the powerless.

Over the seven decades since its adoption, the Universal Declaration has underpinned countless beneficial changes in the lives of millions of people across the world, permeating some 90 national Constitutions and numerous national, regional and international laws and institutions.

But, 70 years after its adoption, the work the Universal Declaration lays down for us to do is far from over. And it never will be. 

In 30 crystal-clear articles, the Universal Declaration shows us the measures which will end extreme poverty, and provide food, housing, health, education, jobs and opportunities for everyone.

It lights the path to a world without wars and Holocausts, without torture or famine or injustice. A world where misery is minimized and no one is too rich or powerful to evade justice.

A world where every human has the same worth as every other human, not just at birth but for the duration of their entire lives.

The drafters wanted to prevent another war by tackling the root causes, by setting down the rights everyone on the planet could expect and demand simply because they exist – and to spell out in no uncertain terms what cannot be done to human beings.

The poor, the hungry, the displaced and the marginalized – drafters aimed to establish systems to support and protect them.

The right to food and to development is crucial. But this has to be achieved without discrimination on the basis of race, gender or other status. You cannot say to your people – I will feed you, but I won’t let you speak or enjoy your religion or culture.

The rights to land and adequate housing are absolutely basic – and yet in some countries, austerity measures are eroding those very rights for the most vulnerable.

Climate change can undermine the right to life, to food, to shelter and to health. These are all related – and the Universal Declaration and international human rights conventions provide a roadmap to their achievement.

I am convinced that the human rights ideal, laid down in this Declaration, has been one of the most constructive advances of ideas in human history – as well as one of the most successful.

But today, that progress is under threat.

We are born ‘free and equal,’ but millions of people on this planet do not stay free and equal. Their dignity is trampled and their rights are violated on a daily basis.

In many countries, the fundamental recognition that all human beings are equal, and have inherent rights, is under attack. The institutions so painstakingly set up by States to achieve common solutions to common problems are being undermined.

And the comprehensive web of international, regional and national laws and treaties that gave teeth to the vision of the Universal Declaration is also being chipped away by governments and politicians increasingly focused on narrow, nationalist interests. 

We all need to stand up more energetically for the rights it showed us everyone should have – not just ourselves, but all our fellow human beings – and which we are at constant risk of eroding through our own, and our leaders’ forgetfulness, neglect or wanton disregard.

I will end, where the Universal Declaration begins, with the powerful promise – and warning – contained in the first lines of its Preamble:
"…Recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world.

"…Disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief, and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people.

"…It is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse as a last resort to rebellion against tyranny and oppression that human rights should be protected by the rule of law."

And we would do well to pay more attention to the final words of that same Preamble:

"…every individual and every organ of society keeping this Declaration constantly in mind shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms  and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among the peoples of territories under their jurisdiction."

We have come a long way down this path since 1948. We have taken many of progressive measures prescribed by the Universal Declaration at the national and international levels.

But we still have a long way to go, and too many of our leaders seem to have forgotten these powerful and prophetic words. We need to rectify that, not just today, not just on the 70th anniversary next Monday, but every day, every year.

Human rights defenders the world over are on the frontlines of defending the Universal Declaration through their work, their dedication and their sacrifice. No matter where we live or what our circumstances are, most of us do have the power to make a difference – to make our homes, communities, countries, and our world better – or worse – for others. Each of us needs to do our part to breathe life into the beautiful dream of the Universal Declaration.

For this was the gift of our ancestors, to help us avoid ever having to go through what they went through.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was adopted by the UN General Assembly at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris three years after the end of World War II. It was the product of 18 months’ work by a drafting committee, with members and advisers from all across the world, and – in the words of one of its principal architects, René Cassin – "at the end of one hundred sessions of elevated, often impassioned discussion, was adopted in the form of 30 articles on December 10, 1948."

Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU on the 10 years anniversary of the conflict between Russia and Georgia

Published in World
Tuesday, 07 August 2018 12:28

Today marks the tenth anniversary of the conflict between Russia and Georgia. The European Union's commitment to a peaceful resolution of the conflicts in Georgia remains as strong as ever. The European Union reiterates its firm support to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognised borders.

Today marks the tenth anniversary of the conflict between Russia and Georgia. The European Union's commitment to a peaceful resolution of the conflicts in Georgia remains as strong as ever. The European Union reiterates its firm support to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognised borders.

Unfortunately, Russian military presence in both Abkhazia and South Ossetia continues in violation of international law and commitments undertaken by Russia under the 12 August 2008 agreement, mediated by the European Union. 

The European Union reconfirms its commitment to remain engaged and involved in stabilisation and conflict resolution efforts in Georgia, including by continuing its engagements as co-chair in the Geneva discussions, the efforts of the EU Special Representative, and the continued presence on the ground of the EU Monitoring Mission.

The EU welcomes the package of proposals "A Step to a Better Future" of the Georgian government that can benefit the citizens living on both sides of the Administrative Boundary Lines by facilitating trade, education and mobility. Such proposals are in line with the European Union's policy of engagement with the breakaway regions of Georgia.

In these ten years, Georgia has strengthened its democratic institutions and undertaken reforms in the rule of law. Georgia has developed a thriving economy and become an important destination for foreign direct investment and tourism. It now represents a model of democratic stability in the region.

In addition, Georgia and the EU have signed an ambitious Association Agreement, including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area that will shape our bilateral relations for years to come. In March 2017, Visa Free Travel for short term stays entered into force for Georgian citizens. The EU's engagement with Georgia is a true partnership based on political association and economic integration, as well as on a strong friendship between our peoples.

 

Declaration of NATO’s Parliamentary Assembly

Published in Politics
Tuesday, 30 May 2017 10:02

Within the framework of its spring session from 26 to 30 May 2017, NATO’s Parliamentary Assembly passed a Declaration in support of Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic integration, which contains highly important political messages. 
The NATO PA Declaration reaffirms the importance of the Alliance’s Open Door Policy and the progress Georgia has made as an aspirant nation on its integration path.
The Declaration emphasizes the Assembly’s firm commitment to Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic integration and the fact that Georgia’s relationship with the Alliance contains all the practical tools to prepare for eventual membership,
The declaration therefore urges the member governments and parliaments of the North Atlantic Alliance to advance further the political dimension of Georgia’s NATO integration in order to create the conditions to grant the Membership Action Plan to Georgia in the future.
The Document deals in detail with all important aspects of NATO-Georgia practical co-operation urging the member governments to continue strengthening Georgia’s defence capabilities, including by helping Georgia enhance its ability to tackle hybrid threats.
The Document declares unequivocally that Georgia makes a significant contribution to the common Euro-Atlantic security.
The Assembly Reaffirms its strong support to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia condemning the continuous illegal occupation of the Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions of Georgia, steps taken towards the de facto annexation of these regions by Russia and other illegal activities.
The Assembly calls upon the Russian Federation to reverse the recognition of Georgia’s occupied regions as independent states and withdraw its military forces from these territories.
The Declaration highly appraises Georgia’s reforms in various areas bringing the country closer to Euro-Atlantic standards.
The meeting of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Tbilisi and the Declaration adopted provide a clear proof of the increasing dynamics of NATO-Georgia relations serving the ultimate goal of speeding up the process of Georgia’s integration with NATO.

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