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Kersti Kaljulaid, September 12, 2018. Photo: Screengrab from Economic Policy Research Center video

Kersti Kaljulaid: Georgia’s New President Should be Able to Unite People

Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid said that Georgia’s new president should make “loud and open declaration” that s/he will be the president for all people and all interest groups.

“You will be able to unite your people, to support the objectives, which should be actually the objectives which you see from president’s office and which is harder to see from the prime minister’s office,” Kaljulaid stressed.

Kaljulaid, whose presidential mandate, similarly to Georgia’s new Constitution, does not carry executive responsibilities, said “uniting your people behind the single goal of becoming functional, democracy and rule of law country – shining star of the region” should be the objective of any president in Georgia.

Estonian President was among the foreign dignitaries, who participated in the two-day international conference “World in 2018: Upside Down?” co-hosted by the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University and the Economic Policy Research Center (EPRC), on September 11-12.

She voiced her remarks during yesterday’s closing discussion with Kurt Volker, executive director of the McCain Institute for International Leadership.

On October 28, Georgian citizens will elect their fifth president for a six-year term. This will be the last time that the head of state will be elected through direct ballot.

According to the new constitution, which will enter into force following the presidential elections, the new President will be elected by the 300-member Electoral College for a term of five years.

Earlier yesterday, Kersti Kaljulaid met with Georgian President Giorgi Margevlashvili and Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze, discussing bilateral and international cooperation, among them Georgia’s EU and NATO aspirations.

The Estonian President also laid wreath to the fallen soldiers of the Russo-Georgia war at the Mukhadgverdi Brothers Cemetery, where Archil Tatunashvili was also laid to rest on March 24.

Her visit to Tbilisi came less than three months after Giorgi Margvelashvili traveled to Estonia, to attend the country’s centennial anniversary celebrations.

This post is also available in: Georgian Russian

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