Ruling party initiates impeachment against President after unauthorised foreign visit

  • Kobakhidze claimed the public was “aware” of Zourabichvili’s “radically different attitude” towards process related to the country obtaining the European Union membership candidate status. Photo: Georgian Dream Press Office

Agenda.ge, 1 Sep 2023 - 12:23, Tbilisi,Georgia

Irakli Kobakhidze, the Chair of the ruling Georgian Dream party, on Friday said the Political Council of the party had decided to initiate an impeachment procedure against President Salome Zourabichvili over her “gross violation” of the constitution through her departure on an official visit abroad without the Government’s authorisation. 

As you know, the President of Georgia, Salome Zourabichvili, grossly violated the constitution of Georgia and started a series of visits to foreign countries without the Government's consent. According to the constitution of Georgia, only the Government of Georgia is authorised to implement both domestic and foreign policy of the country”, Kobakhidze said.

Kobakhidze claimed the public was “aware” of Zourabichvili’s “radically different attitude” towards process related to the country obtaining the European Union membership candidate status.

“Her stance is that Georgia did not deserve the candidate status last year. Moreover, according to her statement, the Parliament and the Government are only formally fulfilling the conditions of the European Union, which means that, in her opinion, Georgia does not deserve the status even now”, he said.

On the backdrop of such an attitude, it is obvious that any European visit of the President is counterproductive in terms of Georgia receiving the candidate status and directly opposes the efforts of the Georgian Government to gain for Georgia the said status”, the ruling party head continued.

Kobakhidze acknowledged the impeachment required the support of 100 MPs and therefore had no prospect of implementation without votes from the domestic “radical” opposition.

Despite this, at the meeting of the Political Council of the party, we made a decision to initiate the impeachment procedure against the President. First of all, this is our responsibility before the constitution. Turning a blind eye to gross violations of the constitution undermines the rule of law and the democratic constitutional system, which we cannot allow”, he concluded.

The Georgian Government Administration on Wednesday said the Government had rejected requests by Zourabichvili’s office for approval of her official visits to Germany, Ukraine, Switzerland, Poland, Belgium, Denmark, the United Arab Emirates, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and Israel.

However, the President on Thursday departed for a visit to Germany, as her Administration said she was starting a series of meetings with European leaders to garner support for Georgia to be granted the EU membership candidate status.

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