People’s Power Attacks West over “Foreign Agents” Bill Criticism

On April 18, People’s Power, the ruling Georgian Dream party’s spin-off issued a lengthy statement attacking the West for condemning the reintroduced Foreign Agents bill. The party accused Georgia’s “sworn friends” of trying to conduct a revolution together with the Georgian opposition and the NGOs. The statement full of conspiratorial scenarios, claims that the EU will “refuse to start negotiations” to prompt a revolution in the country, but “if the public is informed about the truth and remains vigilant, we are sure that the third attempt at revolution will also fail easily.”

In its statement, full of idiomatic expressions and cliches, alien to the Georgian language but organic to the Russian language, the party rhetorically asks whether the reason behind the U.S. opposition to the Foreign Agents bill could be that “the largest part of these funds is used for revolutionary scenarios and the return of the agents to power, weakening of state institutions, damage to the reputation of the Orthodox Church, LGBT propaganda, promotion of political intervention on religious grounds, support for religious extremism, blocking of strategic economic projects, radicalization and deepening of so-called polarization.” The party compared the U.S. aid to “trap” and “capital investment.”

Speaking of the United States support to Georgia over the past 30 years, the party claimed it was directed not at the country’s development, but at “establishing and strenthening agents” in Georgia. “As a result of this so-called aid, we received the occupation of the 20 percent of the country’s territories, more than 400 dead and 30 thousand Georgian IDPs. The Georgian people are still paying the credits which were used to incite and save Saakashvili regime.”

In the statement, the Georgian Dream’s spin-off also touches upon the strained relations between Georgia and Ukraine, saying: “the government of Ukraine is trying to blackmail us not out of their own volition, but at the incitation of the same patrons, who have protected Saakashvili at the outset of 2008 war and who have now openly took hold of Europe, too.”

According to the party, those “patrons” have rallied “all three main institutons of the EU against Georgia since 2021” to “demolish Georgian Dream” and to ensure the return to power of “the collective United National Movement, and hence the agents network.” In this context, the party mentioned the European Parliament’s resolutions “demanding the freedom of violent perpetrators and the punishment of Bidzina Ivanishvili,” the refusal to grant Georgia the EU candidacy in 2022, and the EU-brokered April 19 agreement aimed at “substituting the Georgian Constitution.”

The People’s Power statement concludes: “We remind you once again of our well-founded expectation: they will refuse to start negotiations for the elections, with the view to organize for the third time a revolution and disrupt the country through the collective national movement and the CSOs. However, if the public knows the truth, Georgia will definitely protect its sovereignty and the country will be able to maintain peace and tranquillity.”

The anti-Western People’s Power movement was created in 2022 by GD MPs who left the party, declaring that the GD had fallen into the EU candidacy “mousetrap” and pushed the narrative that the EU wouldn’t give Georgia the candidacy if it didn’t open a “second front” to fight Russia after the invasion of Ukraine. In the last two years, People’s Power has openly criticized the West in its many lengthy letters and pushed to restrict the rights of foreign-funded civil society organizations by initiating the infamous “Foreign Agents” bill, which was dropped in March 2023 after massive protests. The bill was reintroduced by the ruling Georgian Dream again on April 3, leading to harsh domestic and internaitonal outcry.

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


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