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Swiss Parliament Speaker Visits Georgia

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A ten-member delegation from Switzerland, led by Marina Carobbio Guscetti, the president of the National Council of Switzerland, is paying an official visit to Georgia on October 27-30.

Today, Speaker Guscetti met with her Georgian counterpart, Archil Talakvadze. According to Speaker Talakvadze, at the meeting the two chairs spoke of bilateral cooperation in political, economic and cultural spheres.

In the joint press remarks following the meeting, Speaker Talakvadze thanked Guscetti for supporting Georgia’s territorial integrity, as well as for “the important mission” that Switzerland’s performs for solving the problem of “illegal occupation” between Georgia and Russia.

On her part, the Swiss Speaker said the two countries have “common roots and share many traditions and values.” Calling Swiss-Georgia relations “excellent,” Guscetti noted that Switzerland is “happy to contribute to Georgia’s development,” and that her country is “proud” to perform its “specific role” in Georgia-Russia relations.

Speaker Guscetti said Switzerland supports Georgia’s transition towards fully-proportional electoral system, and hoped that this will lead to “adequate representation of different stakeholders of society” in parliament.

“Switzerland will remain engaged in supporting the consolidation of Georgia’s democracy. On the one hand, this implies strong and resilient institutions, and especially a strong parliament fulfilling its task of oversight, as well as an independent judiciary, enforcing the respect of the rule of law. On the other hand, beyond institutional reforms, this implies the development of a culture of political dialogue based on respect,” she stated.

Speaker Guscetti underscored that “as Switzerland experience shows, constructive compromise is not a weakness, but strength. Politics must revolve around contest of ideas, and not focus on competition between individuals.” “Culture of dialogue and inclusion not only apply to the political arena but to society as a whole,” she added.

As part of her visit to Georgia, Marina Carobbio Guscetti met with Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili. According to President Zurabishvili, they talked about the situation in occupied territories, “Switzerland’s special role in finding a peaceful solution, and the important economic relations” between the two countries.

Later today the Swiss Parliament Speaker also met with Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia and Foreign Minister Davit Zalkaliani. She attended opening of a new Swiss Embassy building in Tbilisi as well. 

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)

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