People's Power, a public movement established by former MPs of the ruling Georgian Dream party who exited the team last year, on Monday said the domestic bill on transparency of foreign influence had become a “target of unjustified criticism”, and called comparisons with laws in the United States and Russia “categorically unacceptable”.
Proposed by the movement and set to be submitted to the Parliament, the legislation envisages registration of “non-commercial legal entities and media outlets as agents of foreign influence if they derive more than 20 percent of their income from abroad”.
The release by the movement said “unlike the American and Russian laws, the bill initiated by us is fully compatible with legal standards, including in terms of human rights”.
It can be safely said that [our] bill is not harsher in any aspect than its American analogue. Moreover [...] unlike the American law, our bill is fully compatible with human rights standards”, the statement also noted.
Members of the movement cited Georgia’s status as a small country facing “multifaceted interest and danger” against its sovereignty that “can come from the west and north, as well as from the south and east”, in their justification for the legislative initiative.
The only goal of our bill is to ensure full transparency of foreign funding of organisations, so that Georgian citizens know who is behind the activities of this or that association, distinguish cases of positive and non-positive influence on Georgia and form their own attitude to the current political and social processes”, the statement said.