OSCE PA Human Rights Committee Visits Georgia

On January 11-12, the leaders of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly’s (OSCE PA) human rights committee delegation visited Georgia, holding meetings with the Georgian MPs, government representatives as well as the CSOs “to co-ordinate work and hear about priority issues facing Georgia,” OSCE reported

Meetings in the Parliament

In the Parliament of Georgia, the delegation including the OSCE PA Committee Vice-Chair Farah Karimi (MP, Netherlands) and Rapporteur Johan Büser (MP, Sweden), was hosted by the Chairperson of the Foreign Relations Committee, MP Nikoloz Samkharadze. 

According to the OSCE PA, the meeting with Samkharadze was  “intended to help to identify topics for the OSCE PA to engage with ahead of the Winter Meeting taking place next month in Vienna, where Rapporteur Büser will present preliminary ideas for the report and resolution he will prepare for this summer’s Annual Session in Vancouver.” 

In the Parliament, the delegation also held a meeting with the Human Rights and Civil Integration Committee member, David Sergeenko, according to whom “the guests were interested in the recent steps in the human rights direction, as well as the healthcare, social policy spheres, and rights of minorities and children. During the consideration, we outlined negative phenomena such as violence against women. The OSCE PA representatives expressed their interest in the legal state of the Georgian citizens residing in the occupied regions.”

Meeting with State Minister for Reconciliation

On Thursday, the delegation met with the State Minister of Georgia for Reconciliation and Civic Equality, Tea Akhvlediani.  According to the ministry, Tea Akhvlediani gave the delegation an overview of the goals, successes, and plans for the two directions that fall under the purview of the State Minister’s office: the policy on reconciliation and engagement, as well as the policy on civic equality and integration. Tea Akhvlediani also thanked the delegation for the OSCE support for Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty within its internationally recognized borders. 

Visit to Occupation Line

After the meeting with Akhvlediani, the delegation members visited the Odzisi village at the Occupation Line. “In discussions with interlocutors, the PA members discussed issues including continuing detentions along the administrative boundary lines, and the human rights of people living in the occupied regions. The members were particularly interested in any changes in relations following Russia’s attack on Ukraine,” the OSCE PA Committee statement reads, adding that “the PA members also focused on Georgia’s commitment and willingness to resolve the outstanding problems by dialogue within the Geneva Discussions and the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanisms.”

“As I begin to work on my report and draft resolution, I am grateful for this opportunity to explore human rights-related topics and ensure that they are at the top of our agenda,” Rapporteur Büser summed up the visit.

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