Anti-Western ‘People Power’ Propose “Foreign Agent” Laws Targeting CSOs, Media

The Anti-Western People Power announced on December 29 at a media briefing that it will register two draft laws in the Parliament in January 2023. According to the MPs representing People Power, the draft laws will envisage creating a registry for “agents of foreign influence” and “regulating the dissemination of fake news by media.” People Power says the draft laws will be based on “the best Western practices.”

People Power is a spin-off faction consisting of the former Georgian Dream MPs, who continue to support the government. GD leader, Irakli Kobakhidze argued in October, that the parties have “no significant differences” in values, but differ in the ways they choose to frame certain issues.

People Power plans to introduce legislation that will make it obligatory for “all relevant CSOs and other entities, who receive funds from foreign sources and aim to influence decision-making on public matters, or the formation of public opinion,” to register in the registry of agents of foreign influence.

According to Guram Matcharashvili, one of the leaders of the group, “the definition of an agent of foreign influence will be introduced and the relevant entities will be obliged to fully declare their financial income and expenses.”

Also, the vocally Anti-Western group of MPs announced drafting another law on regulating media, which they claim to be “based on the legislation of one of the advanced European democracies.” People Power says the draft law aims to prevent and respond to the dissemination of “fake news” by the media.

“As you know, today quite an array of CSOs and media outlets play a significant role in the radicalization and polarization of political processes in Georgia. Therefore, we believe that the adoption of both bills prepared by us will make a significant contribution to depolarization, which is a necessary condition for the peaceful and stable development of Georgia,” People Power added.

People Power hopes for the support of the Georgian people, “for whom the security and sovereignty of Georgia are precious and who are tired of the constant circulation of lies and polarization.” To get the draft laws adopted by the Parliament, People Power says it will cooperate with the ruling Georgian Dream party as well as with other “non-radical” parliamentary political groups who are “free of foreign influence.”

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


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