A group of 45 civil society organizations issued a statement on June 29, after German Ambassador Hubert Knirsch slammed them for appealing to UN Child Rights Committee to reject the candidacy of Sopio Kiladze, an MP from the ruling Georgian Dream party.
Responding to Ambassador’s reproval that they had launched attacks “of a personal nature” targeting Kiladze, local watchdogs refuted that their opposition to her nomination was driven by partisan politics.
German Ambassador’s statement that civil society outfits conflate reasoned criticism with political processes is astonishing, stressed the CSOs. “Such attitude endangers unfettered work of civil society outfits,” the group added.
The group reiterated that the selection process that resulted in picking Parliament Human Rights Committee Chair Sopio Kiladze “lacked transparency,” while the candidate failed to meet relevant qualifications to sit on the UN Committee.
A week ago, Georgian CSOs issued an appeal openly opposing the nomination of Sopio Kiladze to the UN Committee, citing her questionable track record in protecting human rights and “opaque” selection procedures.
On June 25, the German Embassy published a statement quoting Knirsch, who raised concern over the appeal, slamming local watchdogs for engaging in “attacks of a personal nature,” which he said was “regrettable” amid the “deplorably polarized political landscape” of Georgia.