For the first time in the history of independent Georgia, outgoing and incoming presidents have met in the presidential palace in a friendly environment to calmly discuss the power handover.
Outgoing President Giorgi Margvelashvili waited for the president-elect and first female in the role Salome Zurabishvili outside the Avlabari presidential palace to greet her and invite her inside the building for the discussions.
Margvelashvili and Zurabishvili discussed domestic and foreign policy issues. Photo: President's press office.
The administration of the president of Georgia reported that domestic and foreign political issues were discussed during the meeting.
President Margvelashvili congratulated his successor on her victory and wished her success in the service for the country,” the president’s administration reported.
For her part Salome Zurabishvili thanked the president that the handing over the power is taking place democratically, as Georgia deserves this,” the administration said.
Margvelashvili was elected to the position in 2013. He refused to run again for the presidency and stated that he “wanted to set a precedent of the Georgian president ending his term peacefully and democratically.”
Margvelashvili’s predecessor Mikheil Saakashvili left Georgia before his [Margvelashvili’s] inauguration and shortly after he was declared wanted for several criminal cases.
For his part Saakashvili overthrew the power of Eduard Shevardnadze through the 2003 Rose Revolution.
The first president of Georgia Zviad Gamsakhurdia’s death still remains controversial. There are two versions about his death during the unrest in the country in 1993-suicide or murder.
The Georgian Dream ruling party endorsed independent presidential candidate Zurabishvili, was born in Paris to a family of Georgian political emigrants, who were forced to leave the country when the Russian Red Army entered Georgia in 1921 and ended the three-year existence of the First Democratic Republic of Georgia.