On September 14, MEPs debated their report assessing the latest developments regarding the EU’s Association Agreement with Georgia on a Plenary Session at the European Parliament. The MEPs’ remarks triggered varying reactions among the ruling Georgian Dream (GD) and the opposition parties.
Gia Volski, First Deputy Speaker of the Georgian Parliament reacted to Polish MEP Anna Fotyga’s appeal to free Giorgi Rurua, one of the shareholders of pro-opposition Mtavari Arkhi TV. Volski decried Fotyaga’s remark as “subjective” and “reflective of her political taste.”
Responding to MEP Viola von Cramon-Taubadel’s remark about “shadow rule of billionaire Ivanishvili,” MP Volski asserted that “since Ivanishvili’s arrival [to the government], nobody has been torturing and killing people in the country.”
Vice Speaker Kakha Kuchava, Georgian Dream MP, reckoned that the Association Agreement implementation report is “a rather great acknowledgment of the reforms, and of the right path the Georgian people and Georgia have embarked upon.”
MP Kuchava also highlighted that MEPs reaffirmed the EU’s commitment to acknowledging Georgia’s territorial integrity. “The illegal actions of Russia were explicitly condemned on numerous occasions and again, firm support was expressed for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognized boundaries,” the GD lawmaker added.
Leader of the opposition United National Movement, Grigol Vashadze noted that MEPs have become acquainted with how the Georgian Dream “rigged” the 2018 Presidential Elections. “Nobody will let the Georgian government pull the same trick twice,” Vashadze said.
“The report of the parliament and the public statements of the MEPs clearly showed the tendency that they support Georgia and the Georgian people; however, they are extremely critical towards the Georgian Dream government,” Davit Bakradze, leader of the European Georgia Party claimed.
Chair of the For Justice party Eka Beselia stated that many of the remarks made at the Plenary Session represent “a direct message” to the Georgian Dream to ensure that the legitimacy of the elections is not put under question.
Labor Party leader, Shalva Natelashvili claimed that the MEPs’ remarks emphasize how “the international community, following October 31, no longer wishes to see Bidzina Ivanishvili in charge of the government.”