The High Council of Justice will hold its first meeting with its renewed composition on July 3. On June 21, the term of 8 members of the HCOJ expired.
On June 12 2017, a draft law amending the Law on National Regulatory Authorities was registered in the Parliament, aiming to limit the scope of the new Civil Service Law on the employees of regulatory authorities. Namely, according to the amendments, the staff of regulatory agencies will be exempt from the requirements of the law in areas of remuneration, classification, bonuses, promotion, disciplinary actions, evaluation, etc.
We are sending this message on behalf of 30 civil society originations to alert you on some very damaging actions by the ruling political party in Georgia, which does adversely affect the quality of democracy in the country and is a dangerous attempt consolidate political power.
On June 19, the ruling party unveiled its decision to keep the mixed election system for the 2020 parliamentary elections and to replace it with a fully proportional election system for the 2024 elections. In addition, according to representatives of the majority, the threshold for the 2020 elections will be reduced to 3% as a one-time initiative, while the decision about the abolishment of party blocks (electoral coalitions) will remain intact.
On June 17, 2017, at a working meeting in the Parliament of Georgia, the Legal Issues Committee announced plans to initiate amendments to the Law on Broadcasting.
The Coalition for an Independent and Transparent Judiciary and the National Platform for Drug Policy react to the Kutaisi City Court decision on the case of induced suicide committed by Demur Sturia and the criminal case of the band Birzha Mafia pending at Tbilisi City Court.
The Coalition to Independent and Transparent Judiciary responds to the draft legislation that would create an investigative department for cases of ill-treatment at the Prosecutor’s Office rather than an independent investigative mechanism. The Coalition believes that this does not meet the minimum requirements for independence and transparency, and clearly demonstrates the government’s lack of political will to implement real reform.
The Parliament of Georgia is hearing proposed amendments to the legislation regulating judicial probation, with the view of complying with the Constitutional Court decision on the subject. The Constitutional Court decision of February 15, 2017 on the case of Omar Jorbenadze vs. Parliament of Georgia.
On May 30, Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association and Transparency International – Georgia were scheduled to hold a presentation of their fifth report of monitoring the High Council of Justice of Georgia (HCoJ) but in protest of the situation in the judicial system they refused to present the report.
The undersigned organizations express deep concern about the alleged forced disappearance of the Azerbaijani civil activist and journalist Afgan Mukhtarli in Tbilisi on the evening of May 29. According to recent information provided by his lawyer, the journalist was detained near his house in Tbilisi and forcibly placed into a car.