Georgian Foreign Minister Ilia Darchiashvili on Friday said the European Union flag was “flying not only at protest rallies, but in the hearts of all of us” given the “historical choice” of EU membership by the country’s citizens.
Darchiashvili’s remark followed German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock’s comment on the public protests earlier this month against the “foreign agents” bill that led to its withdrawal by the ruling party on March 9.
The German official said she had been “very impressed” by the demonstrators protesting with EU flags in the process that was “contributing to the development of civil society”.
At a press briefing held in the Georgian foreign service, the top Georgian diplomat thanked Baerbock for her messages of support.
The European Union flag flies not only at protest rallies, but in the hearts of all of us, because the European Union is the historical, civilisational choice of our country, our people, and we hope very much for your very strong support in this direction. Thank you once again. Your arrival is very important in our country - very necessary and timely”, Darchiashvili said.
The Georgian Minister also highlighted the “freest” media landscape in the country under the ruling Georgian Dream party Government, adding it was visible “with naked eye” that there were “many critical media” in the country.
When we talk about what this Government has brought, media freedom is one of the [achievements]. [...] Critical media exists, functions in this country and is part of the country's democratic development”, he noted.
The top Georgian diplomat also reviewed the cooperation between the two countries by saying “Georgia and Germany are reliable, valuable partners for each other, and our relations are based on a strong, centuries-old foundation [and] common European values”.
We consider the visit [of the German FM] as a confirmation of strong political support from Germany in this very important period for Georgia. Also, in light of significant security challenges in the region, we appreciate that Germany supports Georgia's aspirations and European [integration] choice, which are based on common values and the expression of the unwavering will of the Georgian people”, Darchiashvili concluded.