Parliament Speaker: “Georgia’s domestic and foreign policy defined”

Georgia's Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili; Photo by, 06 Nov 2014 - 18:23, Tbilisi,Georgia

Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili says he is confident Georgia’s domestic and foreign policy was clearly defined and any suggestion that there is a threat to the country’s Euro-Atlantic integration are unreasonable. 

Usupashvili’s announcement came on Thursday afternoon – one day after Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze, who was also the Minister of European Affairs resigned and two days after pro-Western Defense Minister Irakli Alasania was dismissed after he insinuated there was a "threat” of changing Georgia’s European and Euro-Atlantic future.

Usupashvili was quick to quash this suggestion.

"I remind you that the domestic and foreign policy was defined by Parliament and [Parliament] has already defined them in July 2014 when we endorsed the new composition of the Government and the program thereof,” Usupashvili said at a special press conference today.

Controversy rose last week when the Chief Prosecutor’s Office launched another corruption investigation and arrested five current and former senior Defense Ministry and General Staff personnel.

Usupashvili reiterated that all suggestions of there being a threat to the Euro-Atlantic development of the country were "unreasonable”.

He said if there were any current problems, it was related to the recent Government ministerial change, which left some ministries without leadership.

"If there are any threats and problems, it only is the retirement of Ministers with various reasons. It entailed problems in this regards as the leading Ministries appeared without leadership. I am sure persons with relevant qualifications and relevant political view will soon be appointed to continue EU integration,” he said.

Usupashvili expressed his gratitude to the Ministers who had worked in this direction and contributed their merit in progress of the country in its foreign policy direction.

However, he also expressed concern that the Georgian Dream coalition, the country’s Parliament and the Government would not have the honour to work with them.

"We along with those Ministers endorsed the Government and had hopes on them, we wanted them to serve the country,” he stressed.

Usupashvili was confident that it was possible to investigate a criminal case without such "political cataclysms”.

"I have the impression that all the participants of the process willingly or not, rushed and thus created problems. This loss is important for the majority as our colleagues Free Democrats decided to leave us. I would like to thank them for our cooperation [over the past] three years and I am sure that we will cooperate on many important issues,” he said.

Members of Free Democrats - the political party led by ex-Defence Minister Irakli Alasania – left the ruling Georgian Dream coalition, of which it was the second-largest member with 10 MPs.

In his speech, Usupashvili, as the Representative of the Republican Party, offered "liberals from Free Democrats” to continue cooperation in or out of Parliament.

He highlighted that one issue that had been outlined during discussions with the coalition was to better protect the law-enforcement, namely the Prosecutor’s Office, from political processes.