The Chair of the ruling Georgian Dream party, Irakli Kobakhidze, on Monday, said: “Today, the wealthy and their affiliated NGOs published a letter in which they reprimanded the Georgian authorities for leaving the American sanctions without responding.”
Below is his full statement:
“As reported to the public 7 months ago, visa restrictions were imposed on several current and former Georgian judges on behalf of the United States State Department. The Georgian authorities tried to obtain evidence from the partners to support the relevant charges, but to no avail. Moreover, we heard a completely unconvincing explanation that the imposition of visa restrictions for judges was based on information received from open sources, namely, televisions, newspapers and other mass media.
Also, 6 weeks ago the citizen of Georgia, Otar Partskhaladze, was included in the American list of sanctioned persons. As the head of the State Security Service of Georgia explained at the parliament session, the service requested relevant evidence from its partners. However, as it turned out, the Georgian authorities did not receive any evidence neither in official or private meetings, nor through open and closed channels. Moreover, the partners themselves asked the Georgian agencies to obtain and send evidence on the case of Partskhaladze.
This information shows that the imposition of visa restrictions for judges and the inclusion of Otar Partskhaladze in the list of sanctioned persons were not based on any facts or evidence. In the past, there were frequent cases when our strategic partner faced awkward situations due to the irresponsible actions of rich NGOs. Even consider the scandal associated with the results of parallel voting in the elections, for which one of the rich NGOs created the greatest inconvenience.
A couple of weeks ago the new Ambassador of the United States of America Mrs. Robin Dunigan arrived in Georgia, with whom senior representatives of our government have already held very productive meetings. We have a strong basis for optimism that the Georgian-American strategic partnership will deepen significantly during Ambassador Robin Dunnigan’s tenure. In this situation the statement of the wealthy NGOs is a step against the positive efforts of the ambassador, the obvious purpose of which is to maintain unwanted misunderstandings in Georgian-American relations.
The imposition of visa restrictions on judges without evidence has created serious discomfort in relations. The respective efforts of the NGOs were dictated by the interest in gaining control over the judiciary among other objectives.
However, we tried our best not to bring this issue to the fore in public discussion, so as not to deepen the embarrassment. With this background, when rich NGOs themselves are trying to actualize their own improbity, we think this fact deserves special concern.
Exactly the same forces that have been providing distorted information to our partners for a long time, who actively agitating against the granting of candidate status to Georgia, are today trying to keep the old artificial inconveniences on the agenda and thereby create new inconveniences, forcing us to not ignore their actions without responding.
It is also significant that the rich NGOs are making the above-mentioned statement against the backdrop of the country waiting for the decision of the European Commission on the status of a candidate. Attacking the authorities a week before the announcement of the decision of the European Commission is nothing more than another rough action directed against the granting of candidate status to Georgia.
It can be seen from everything that rich NGOs do not serve the interests of Georgia, America or Europe. In fact, they serve the “global war party”, whose main goal is the Ukrainization of Georgia. The mentioned force and the NGOs in its service do not want to deepen the Georgian-American relations and are trying in every way to maintain the old, negative trend in these relations, which we cannot allow.
These NGOs protested against the law on “Transparency of foreign financing” and did not want to make their foreign financing transparent to the public, fearing that their anti-state plans and sources of financing would be revealed.
Now, rich NGOs are trying not to allow the new American ambassador to reset relations and, on the contrary, to damage these relations in some way.
We hope that Robin Dunnigan will not actively react to all the actions that are directed against the deepening of relations between the two countries.
We are confident that under Ambassador Robyn Dunnigan, Georgian-American relations and strategic partnership will deepen significantly, for which the management team will make every effort,” he said.