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OSCE PA Human Rights Chair: Violence Reports from Georgia “Viewed with Concern”

On May 16, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly’s Chair of the Committee on Democracy, Human Rights and Humanitarian Questions, Lucie Potůčková reacted to the recent developments in Georgia regarding the Foreign Agents Law, saying the Assembly members have been following the developments in the country and “any report of intimidation and violence is viewed with concern,” according to the OSCE PA press release.

She recalled the importance of safeguarding human rights and fundamental freedoms as crucial OSCE principles and the basis for free and democratic societies in the OSCE region and highlighted the dedication of the OSCE PA to safeguarding these rights and supporting free and democratic societies.

Speaking of the Foreign Agents Law, Potůčková emphasized the vital role that the CSOs play in ensuring the government accountability, and advancing democracy. “Any legislation that impacts the space for civil society to operate freely and independently is troubling and warrants close scrutiny, including from international partners and experts” she said, adding that “measures aimed at enhancing transparency and accountability must be balanced with the need to protect the independence and autonomy of civil society.”

In the press release, OSCE PA also recalled that its President Pia Kauma, Special Representative on South Caucasus Kari Henriksen and Secretary General Roberto Montella held an online meeting with Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze about the Foreign Agents Law last week and reiterated that OSCE PA remains ready “to support and assist Georgia in its efforts to strengthen democratic governance and safeguard human rights.”

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