U.S. Embassy Statement on the Appointment of Judges

Published in Justice
Thursday, 15 July 2021 17:23

Parliament’s July 12 decision to approve six Supreme Court judicial nominations, despite an explicit agreement by Georgia’s political leaders in the April 19 Agreement to “refrain from making appointments to the Supreme Court under existing rules”, is extremely disappointing. Unfortunately, this nomination and appointment process, and the failure to undertake inclusive, comprehensive judicial reform, fell short of the commitment Georgia’s leaders, including the ruling party, made to implement the April 19 Agreement in good faith.

The parties agreed to conduct ambitious judicial reform through a broad, transparent process that includes legal experts, civil society, and opposition parties. Unilateral legislative changes, including those adopted against the advice of international partners while the April 19 Agreement was being negotiated, are inconsistent with the letter and spirit of the Agreement. In particular, the early April amendments to the Organic Law on Common Courts failed to fully address Venice Commission recommendations, including a key recommendation related to staggering judicial appointments. 

The failure to pause the appointment process until after comprehensive judicial reform could take place has real consequences. Legal experts and civil society organizations have highlighted that Parliament’s flawed process did not advance the most qualified nominees, resulting in less-qualified judges receiving lifetime appointments on the court. As a July 9 report by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) found, this nomination process, “took place in an environment where there is a lack of public trust in the independence of the judiciary,” and “applications, background checks, and interviews established by the High Council of Justice for these nominations fell short of international standards.” Given this context, it was imperative that Parliament pause the appointment process to allow for inclusive, comprehensive reform reflecting the input of legal experts, civil society, and opposition. Parliament had the authority to do so and a pause would not have unduly burdened the judiciary’s operation. The decision not to do so is therefore very concerning and constitutes a significant missed opportunity to strengthen confidence in Georgia’s judiciary and advance its democratic development.      

The United States stands ready to continue our efforts to support Parliament and the people of Georgia in credible efforts to strengthen the judicial system and the rule of law in Georgia.

The U.S. Embassy was proud to support the USA Water Polo men’s team in their game against Georgia

Published in Sport
Tuesday, 29 June 2021 14:11

The U.S. Embassy was proud to support the USA Water Polo men’s team in their game against Georgia - the ever-gracious tournament host. While the U.S. and Georgia are close strategic partners, in the sports arena the competition was fierce and we congratulate the American team on its hard fought victory.

US Ambassador Kelly Degnan and President Zourabichvili attended the game to cheer on the players and presented awards to the most valuable player from each side. Ambassador Degnan awarded Max Irving MVP from the U.S. team. The Embassy wishes both teams success in the tournament ahead.

Statement by the US Embassy in Tbilisi

 

Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker’s Travel to Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia

Published in Politics
Monday, 07 June 2021 12:17
Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker’s Travel to Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia. According to the US Embassy in Georgia Acting Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Philip T. Reeker will travel to Tbilisi, Georgia; Baku, Azerbaijan; and Yerevan, Armenia June 6-13 to advance bilateral and regional priorities and to express U.S. support for democratic and economic development across the region.
Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker will meet in Georgia with government, opposition, and civil society leaders to discuss full implementation of the April 19 agreement among Georgian political parties as well as Russia’s ongoing aggression against and occupation of Georgia.
In Armenia and Azerbaijan, Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker will meet with government, civil society, and business leaders to discuss bilateral priorities and issues related to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

U.S. Embassy Statement

Published in Politics
Tuesday, 23 February 2021 12:03

The United States Embassy is deeply concerned by the government’s decision to detain the head of a major opposition political party at the party’s headquarters this morning. We regret that the call of the United States and other international partners for restraint and dialogue was ignored. We are dismayed by the polarizing rhetoric from Georgia’s leadership at a time of crisis. Force and aggression are not the solution to resolving Georgia’s political differences. Today, Georgia has moved backward on its path toward becoming a stronger democracy in the Euro-Atlantic family of nations.

U.S. Embassy Statement

Published in Politics
Thursday, 18 February 2021 12:08

The current dangerous situation following the Melia ruling stems from decades-long problems with the electoral system and the judicial system.

It is imperative the authorities and opposition exercise maximum restraint this morning. The way to address the important issues at stake is through peaceful negotiation.

We urge all involved to remain calm and avoid violence.

Source: https://ge.usembassy.gov/u-s-embassy-statement-2182021/

 

U.S. Embassy Statement on Judgement of the European Court of Human Rights

Published in military
Friday, 22 January 2021 12:10

In the state-to-state case of Georgia v. Russia on the 2008 Russia-Georgia War, the Court ruled clearly in favor of Georgia and found Russia responsible for violating multiple articles of the European Convention of Human Rights, including by detaining and torturing individuals, and denying Georgian citizens the right to return to their homes. The court further found the Russian government has not conducted a full or adequate investigation into the events that took place during and after the hostilities.  

The Court’s ruling adds further weight to the international community’s demand that Russia cease its blatant violations of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Russia’s attempts to control and exploit the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia through borderization, arbitrary detentions, restrictions of movement across the administrative boundary lines, and establishment of socio-economic and military “agreements” between Russia and the two Georgian regions are particularly concerning and unacceptable. These actions threaten the lives, culture, and personal freedoms of people living in these Georgian territories, and deny them the ability to exercise rights and access opportunities that should be available to all Georgian citizens.  

Twelve years have passed since Russia invaded the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia

Published in military
Friday, 07 August 2020 12:42

Twelve years have passed since Russia invaded the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. August 7 is a somber reminder of the thousands who have suffered and continue to suffer in the wake of Russia’s invasion. Today, we remember residents forced out of their homes and forced to live as internally displaced persons. We remember innocent civilians who died because the de facto authorities closed the Administrative Boundary Lines (ABL) and denied them access to emergency medical care. We remember families torn apart and robbed of their livelihoods by illegal “borderization” activities. As the whole world grapples with the effects of COVID-19, Georgia also suffers from the loss of trade between communities now cut off by arbitrary lines, further hampering economic recovery.

In the past year, we also witnessed a major Russian-led incursion, attempting to control hundreds of meters of additional Georgian territory at Chorchana-Tsnelisi. Russia continues to violate the conditions of the 2008 ceasefire agreement. Russian “border” guards detain civilians and use violence along the ABL, including recently shooting a Georgian citizen. Russian-led security forces continue to encroach deeper into Georgian territory, trying to expand the occupied territories meter by meter.

Russia’s responsibilities under the 2008 ceasefire agreement are clear: Russia must withdraw its forces to pre-conflict positions and allow unfettered access for the delivery of humanitarian assistance. We also call again on Russia to reverse its recognition of the so-called independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. It is essential for hundreds of thousands of IDPs and refugees to be able to return safely and with dignity to their homes. The United States' commitment to our friends and partners in Georgia remains steadfast. We stand with the people of Georgia and join them in calling for these communities, divided by Russian aggression, to be united once again.

US Embassy Tbilisi, Georgia

The United States is providing $1.1 million in health funding to Georgia to help prepare laboratory systems

Published in Health
Monday, 30 March 2020 11:27

The United States is providing $1.1 million in health funding to Georgia to help prepare laboratory systems, activate case-finding and event-based surveillance, support technical experts for response and preparedness, bolster risk communication, and more. This information was reported by the administration of the US Embassy in Georgia.

For information a total number of people worldwide infected with the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has reached 720,100, according to Johns Hopkins University. 33 550 people died from the virus and 150 734 recovered.

Top 5 virus-hit countries include United States (139,675), Italy (97,689), China (82,122), Spain (80,031) and Germany (62,095).

On March 11 World Health Organization(WHO) declared COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.

 

EU reacts to recent developments in Georgia: “We urge all sides to remain calm”

Published in Politics
Friday, 21 June 2019 16:59

On 21 June, the EU Delegation to Georgia and the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi made a statement following recent developments in the country.

“We are following very closely events at the Georgian Parliament in Tbilisi this evening,” the statement said. “We recognise the hurt that many people feel today.”

“We urge all sides to remain calm, show restraint and act within the framework of the Constitution at all times,” concluded the statement.

 

Friendly football match held between MIA and US embassy

Published in Sport
Tuesday, 27 June 2017 10:44

Acting chief of mission of the United States, Nicholas Berliner has thanked heads of various MIA Departments and employees for the cooperation and handed out certificates of appreciation on behalf of the US Embassy.

After the ceremony traditional friendly match was held between the teams of MIA and US Embassy which was won by the Georgian law enforcers scoring 11:8.

The event was attended by the Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs Merab malania, Nicholas Berliner, general prosecutor – Irakli Shotadze, head of Special State Protection Service –Anzor Chubinidze, employees of the US embassy and Ministry of Internal Affairs.

“I would like to thank US embassy foe positively assessing activities carried out by Georgian law enforcers and once again noted our fruitful cooperation. Today’s friendly match is another example of our close cooperation and 25 years of successful diplomatic and friendly relations. Such events will bring us even closer and strengthen tight, business and friendly relations between our countries”-stated Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs –Merab Malania.

Friendly football match between the MIA and the US Embassy was held in Tbilisi for the third time.

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