Ruling party head claims “corrupt processes” behind US sanctioning of Georgian judges

  • Kobakhidze alleged attempts to “stigmatise” the Georgian judiciary were being made “mainly through the hands of foreign agents”. Photo: Georgian Dream Press Office

Agenda.ge, 6 Apr 2023 - 11:57, Tbilisi,Georgia

Irakli Kobakhidze, the Chair of the ruling Georgian Dream party, on Wednesday claimed “corruption processes” behind the United States Department of State’s decision to designate four Georgian former and current judges for sanctions for their “involvement in significant corruption”. 

Kobakhidze’s comment followed the Department of State’s public sanctioning of Mikheil Chinchaladze, Levan Murusidze, Irakli Shengelia and Valerian Tsertsvadze under the visa restrictions authority, with the DoS alleging they had “abused their positions as court Chairmen and members of Georgia’s High Council of Justice, undermining the rule of law and the public’s faith in Georgia’s judicial system”.

The GD official claimed “corruption was discussed in this statement, and corrupt processes are behind [it]”.

Corruption is not only about money, and it is particularly disturbing that Secretary of State [Antony] Blinken got directly stained by [his involvement in] such a statement, which is very bad. It speaks very badly of the people who bring such information to the Secretary of State”, Kobakhidze said. 

“Of course, we all understand that Antony Blinken does not sleep or wake up thinking about Georgia - he has many more things to do. [But] [w]hen they bring him such crude documents, it is very serious, and it speaks about corrupt processes underlying it all”, the GD official continued. 

Kobakhidze alleged attempts to “stigmatise” the Georgian judiciary were being made “mainly through the hands of foreign agents”.

Here, too, there is a political interest in interfering with the independence of the judiciary and encroaching on its independence. All this, including the latest statement, shows that they do not see Georgia as a state, they do not recognise our statehood - and we, of course, must protect the state's interests to the end: we must show everyone that Georgia is a state”, he noted. 

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