The Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn, who visited Georgia on September 16, said the current process that will lead to the appointment of Supreme Court judges, “is being followed very closely” not only in Brussels, but in many other European capitals.
“It is considered extremely important to further ensure the independence and the quality of the judiciary, and the further strengthening of its institutions,” Hahn said at a joint news briefing with the Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia yesterday.
Hahn said, he underlined to the Prime Minister “how important it will be for the ongoing electoral reform process” to address all recommendations provided by the OSCE/ODIHR in view of 2020 parliamentary elections as well, to ensure “inclusive and transparent process.”
“In this context, ensuring a free and pluralistic media landscape remains very key for healthy and solid democracy… For us, Georgia is the frontrunner of the respective developments, in particular in the area of the rule of law in the Eastern neighborhood,” he added.
We follow closely the appointment of Supreme Court judges as well as preparation of elections. Important to address #OHDIR recommendations. Let me also re-confirm the #EU’s support f. #Georgia’s territorial integrity & independence. Ongoing borderisation process unacceptable 3/3
— Johannes Hahn (@JHahnEU) September 16, 2019
Speaking of Russian occupation of Georgia, Hahn also said that the EU will “without any doubts” support the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders in a “very tough and consistent” way.
He then expressed his concern over the recent developments around the dividing line with Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, saying that “the closure of crossing points and the ongoing borderization” are unacceptable.
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According to Hahn, this requires “constructive engagement” of all participants of the Geneva International Discussions (GID), including Russia.