About Civil.ge
Eng | Geo | Rus
Last updated: 23:40 - 10 Feb.'16
RSS
Mobile
Twitter
Facebook
Several U.S. Senators Express Concern over Ex-PM's Arrest
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 27 May.'13 / 01:07

Several U.S. Senators made statements expressing concern over the arrest of Georgia’s former PM and secretary general of UNM party Vano Merabishvili.

Merabishvili was arrested on May 21 and charged with abuse of power, misspending/embezzlement and bribing of voters. Ex-healthcare minister and current governor of Kakheti region Zurab Tchiaberashvili was charged along with Merabishvili, but unlike Merabishvili he was released on bail.

Republican Senator Marco Rubio, whom President Saakashvili met during his recent visit to Washington this month, said in a statement on May 24 that he was “deeply concerned” over “what appears to be the politically motivated” detention of Merabishvili.

“The use of pretrial detention in Merabishvili’s case is unnecessary and the government’s efforts to try him in the court of public opinion, rather than through the judicial system, raises questions about the motivations behind his arrest. In the run-up to Georgia’s presidential election in October, it is important that the Georgian government not resort to such tactics and other efforts to intimidate the opposition,” said Senator Rubio, who called on the Obama administration “to speak out clearly in defense of the rule of law and an independent judiciary in Georgia.”

In a joint statement Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen and Republican Senator James Risch said that the arrest of the former Georgian PM was “cause for concern.”

Senators Shaheen and Risch were among those five Senators who sent a letter to PM Ivanishvili in early December calling on him to do “everything necessary to avoid even the perception of selective justice against members of the previous government.”

“As two of the Senate’s most outspoken friends of the people of Georgia, we are deeply committed to a strong U.S.-Georgia relationship and believe that Georgia’s destiny is in the West,” Senators Shaheen and Risch say in their May 24 statement. “As such, in December 2012, we called on the new government of Georgia ‘to avoid even the perception of selective justice against members of the previous government’.”
 
“Unfortunately, recent events, including the arrest and detention of former senior Georgian officials as well as the unbalanced number of prosecutions against members of the opposition party, have deepened our unease and are cause for concern.  The possibility that these arrests are seen as political retribution or designed to settle political scores can undermine the future of democracy in Georgia, and we will be closely scrutinizing these cases as they move forward.”
 
“We expect that in the pursuit of justice, any arrests, detentions, or investigations will be fair, transparent, and completely impartial, and we expect the government to abide by the Prime Minister’s commitment to “ensure against any political influence in the ongoing judicial processes,” the statement reads.

Republican Senator Mark Kirk wrote on his Twitter on May 24: “Deeply concerned by intimidation of Georgian opposition.” He also wrote: President Obama “should condemn & urge new govt [to] follow rule of law.”

Latest News
10 Feb.'16 23:40
Politicians Comment on U.S. Intelligence Annual Report
U.S. diplomat said the report was “unfortunately a little bit misconstrued here in Georgia.”
10 Feb.'16 12:52
Georgia in U.S. Intelligence Annual Report
Frustration of elites with pace of Western integration may slow Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic efforts, it says.
09 Feb.'16 22:28
European Commission to Formally Propose EU Members to Lift Visas for Georgia in ‘Coming Weeks’
“I trust that Georgia will keep up its good performance,” Commissioner Hahn said.
09 Feb.'16 16:55
Georgian PM Meets European Council President
Upcoming elections in Georgia and the issue of visa-free travel rules discussed.
09 Feb.'16 14:48
Georgia to Reintroduce Visa-Free Rules with Iran from Feb.15
Georgia suspended visa-free rules with Iran in July, 2013.
09 Feb.'16 13:00
Citing ‘Flawed’ Rules, Groups Call for Suspending Judicial Appointments
A constitutional court complaint planned to challenge existing rule of judicial appointment.
09 Feb.'16 00:27
Georgia’s PM to Visit Brussels
PM Kvirikashvili will be in Brussels on February 9-10 for talks with EU officials.
08 Feb.'16 23:35
Georgian PM, Iranian President Discuss Cooperation
PM Kvirikashvili and President Rouhani held phone conversation on February 8.
08 Feb.'16 22:54
Repair to Cause Daytime Closure of Tbilisi Airport’s Only Runway
Airport’s operator said daytime flights will be rescheduled during reconstruction in March-June.
08 Feb.'16 15:47
TBC Holding, Conti Joint Venture Awarded Anaklia Deep-Sea Port Project
A joint venture of Georgian and U.S. companies estimates project’s total cost at USD 2.5 billion.

About Civil Georgia
Civil.Ge © 2001-2016, Daily News Online
Registered office: 2 Dolidze Str, 4-th Floor.
61