Parliament Speaker says Georgia moving forward in annual report, opposition interrupts with USSR anthem

Georgian Parliament Speaker Archil Talakvadze delivered his annual speech in parliament earlier today. Photo: parliament of Georgia press office., 18 Feb 2020 - 15:51, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Parliament Speaker Archil Talakvadze has stated during his speech in parliament today that a fair court is the basis of state development and “Georgia is on the right path” in this regard. However, the opposition played the anthem of the Soviet Union during the speech, stating that the situation in the country is ‘alarming in many fields.’  

Talakvadze, who presented an annual report of parliament's activities, stated the judicial reform is successful in the country, with surveys of foreign organisations proving this, and the number of lawsuits from Georgia to the European Court of Human Rights has decreased by 60 per cent. 

In the survey of the Fraser Institute on independent courts Georgia ranked 89th between 2004 and 2012, now we are 66th”, Talakvadze said. 

He stated that the current government “is the guarantor of peace and security” and will allow nobody to stir destabilization, responding to the opposition’s ‘warning’ of a possible confrontation if a Russian delegation is allowed into the country during the CoE ministerial in Tbilisi in May, the event Georgia is hosting as the CoE chair country. 

Opposition members interrupt parliament speaker's speech with USSR anthem. Video by netgazeti.

 Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia will make the decision regarding the issue [on the ministerial and the Russian delegation] in the coming days and will inform the public,” Talakvadze said, accusing the opposition of having ‘double standards.’

He said that there are many in the Georgian opposition now, who while in office, sold strategic state objects on Russia and ‘abandoned soldiers’ on the battlefield during the Russia-Georgia 2008 war. 

 Speaking on 2020 election-related controversies, Talakvadze said that the Georgian Dream leadership kept its promise given in 2017 and wrote in the Georgian constitution in 2018 that the country will move to a fully proportional electoral system from 2024. 

He said that it was ‘regrettable’ the Georgian parliament rejected the ruling party proposed election bill on the early transition to a fully proportional electoral system [from 2020]. 

Member of the European Georgia opposition party Irma Nadirashvili said that playing the anthem of the Soviet Union was ‘symbolic as current Georgia is similar to the Soviet Union under the Georgian Dream leadership.’