In a rare show of unity, the Georgian Parliament on March 15 unanimously passed a resolution on Georgia’s European Integration, with 111 votes in favor, none against.
The document garnered the support of the ruling Georgian Dream, the opposition United National Movement, For Georgia, Lelo, Citizens party, New Political Center – Girchi and European Socialists among others.
The development comes after Georgia signed a formal membership application for the EU on March 3, following the suit of Ukraine.
The Parliament’s resolution calls on the Georgian government to strengthen efforts to prepare Georgia for joining the 27-member-bloc, including by implementing the Association Agreement with the EU.
It also urges the executive branch to carry out projects alongside EU and partner countries that will deepen Georgia’s transport ties with its allies, including by developing transport connections between Black Sea states.
The document also encourages the Government to increase Georgia’s participation in EU programs and agencies, as well as to accelerate integration with the European Economic Area.
The text also urges the government to facilitate the “smooth functioning” of the visa-free regime and the legal employment of Georgian nationals in the EU.
With regards to the EU, the document asks its member states and institutions “to take all necessary steps to accelerate Georgia’s accession to the EU.”
It appeals to the EU to expand its global sanctions regime on those responsible for human rights violations, adopted in 2020 by the EU Foreign Affairs Council, to those breaching human rights in Georgia’s Russian-occupied occupied regions.
The step is seen in the document as necessary for halting human rights violations and arbitrary detentions of Georgian citizens in Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia.
The resolution further calls on the EU to promote peace and stability in Georgia through efforts for the European Union Monitoring Mission to gain access to the occupied regions, to bolster the monitoring of the August 12, 2008 ceasefire agreement with Russia.
The resolution declares that since the restoration of the independence, EU integration is Georgia’s top foreign policy priority, and “a driving force behind its democratic development and economic transformation.”
It stresses that Georgia “remains a committed partner of the EU and a pillar of democracy in the region.”