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CSOs, Citizens Start Petition ‘to Save the Judiciary’

A group, consisting of civil society organizations, political parties and private citizens have started a petition entitled “For Saving the Judiciary”. The petition is addressed to the Parliament of Georgia and the High Council of Justice. It voices demands for finding the ways out of the perceived crisis of confidence in the judicial system.

The statement says the years of reforms “failed to achieve their objectives”. According to it, the key reason is that the ruling parties did not show the political will to relinquish their control over the judiciary. The group believes that this “had adverse effects on the rights of each and every citizen Georgia, as well as the country’s [international] reputation and [its] democratic development.”

The authors of the petition point at the “clannish rule” of “discredited” judges, who “entered into alliance with the ruling party and tailored all important reforms to [suit] their own interests.”

“The signs of nepotism and corruption have emerged in the judiciary. The dominating clan is persecuting dissenting opinions,” reads the petition, according to which “the current crisis destroys trust towards judiciary’s impartiality and independence and shakes the foundations of Georgia’s democratic development.”

The group also notes that resolute decisions and principled reforms are the only solution to the problem. The authors of the petition demand resignation of the judges, Mikheil Chinchaladze and Levan Murusidze, who “have turned into a symbol of injustice,” as well as those members of the High Council of Justice, who supported “clannish principles in decision making.”

The petition has been signed, among others, by Transparency International Georgia, Human Rights and Monitoring Center, Georgian Democracy Initiative, Institute for Development of Freedom of Information, International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy. The Petition is open to signatures from any interested citizen. The petition requires 1000 signatures to be carried forward and has been signed by 425 at the time of writing.

This post is also available in: Georgian Russian

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