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CoE Human Rights Commissioner Meets Reconciliation, Interior Ministers

Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Dunja Mijatović has continued her visit to Georgia, meeting with Reconciliation Minister Tea Akhvlediani, Interior Minister Vakhtang Gomelauri and Vice Speaker Archil Talakvadze.

The Reconciliation Ministry stated today the Commissioner Mijatović and Minister Akhvlediani spoke about the security challenges, human rights and humanitarian situation in Russian-occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia.

After the meeting, Minister Akhvlediani said she particularly focused on ethnic discrimination in occupied Gali and Akhalgori districts, Georgian-majority areas in the Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, respectively.

“We highlighted the restrictions imposed on education in the native language and on the access to private property” she stressed.

The Reconciliation Minister also spoke about arbitrary detentions of Georgian citizens by Russian occupying forces and restrictions on the freedom of movement, which, according to her, “has claimed lives and health of several Georgian citizens.”

On February 23, The Interior Ministry stated Commissioner Mijatović and Minister Gomelauri discussed the Ministry’s human rights policies, including its measures to combat crimes committed on the grounds of discrimination. 

The rights situation in the occupied regions, as well as the human rights reforms by the Georgian Parliament, loomed large in the Commissioner’s meeting with Vice Parliament Speaker Archil Talakvadze on February 23, according to the Georgian Parliament’s press release.

MP Talakvadze said he briefed the official about Georgia’s reforms on labor rights and safety, environmental protection and eliminating discrimination and violence against women.

The meeting was also attended by Vice-Speaker Levan Ioseliani of the Citizens party and Mikheil Sarjveladze, Chair of the Human Rights and Civil Integration Committee.

As part of the trip to Georgia, the CoE Commissioner has also held meetings with Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili, Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili and Public Defender Nino Lomjaria.

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