The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia attended the OSCE Ministerial

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, Ilia Darchiashvili, attended the OSCE Ministerial in Skopje, marking the 30th session of the Council of Foreign Ministers.

Darchiashvili said that he is satisfied with the event, stating, “We heard strong, supportive messages towards our country at the OSCE Ministerial.”

Furthermore, he emphasized the significance of the OSCE ministerial, stating, “The OSCE is the largest organization addressing security issues. Consequently, we maintain a robust, long-term partnership and cooperation with both the organization and its affiliated entities. The Ministerial serves as a platform where we can discuss our country’s challenges, ways to overcome them, and, most importantly, mobilise our partners on the issues that concern us.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov also participated in the OSCE Ministerial in North Macedonia. However, due to Lavrov’s involvement, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, and Ukraine boycotted the meeting of OSCE foreign ministers.

Ahead of the ministerial session, the opposition urged Ilia Darchiashvili to announce a boycott. Grigol Gegelia, the Foreign Secretary of the “Lelo” party, argued that the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia should not attend meetings with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

“The government plans to attend the ministerial meeting, where the murderer of Tamaz Gintur,* the occupier of the sovereign territory of Georgia and the hater of Georgians, Lavrov will be present. I call upon the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Darchiashvili, to immediately announce whether he intends to attend the session with Lavrov” said Gegelia.

*On 6 November, 58-year-old Tamaz Ginturi was fatally shot by Russian soldiers near the village of Kirbali, Gori municipality.

UNM Political Council increased by 20 members

On 29 November, Levan Khabeishvili, the chairman of the “United National Movement,” introduced 20 new members of the political council of the party to the media. He clarified that some of them had prior membership in the party’s council.

Khabeishvili highlighted that by the political council’s decision the new members would have equal rights to other council members. This decision is expected to be officially ratified at the upcoming party conference. Khabeishvili emphasized the ongoing invitation for members from the previous political council to join Mikheil Saakashvili’s “Manifesto of Unity”, keeping the door open for their participation. He expressed confidence in further expansion before the next party conference.

The decision to enlarge the political council was attributed by Levan Khabeishvili to the initiative of the imprisoned third president of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili.

On 27 November, Khabeishvili announced that his predecessor, Nika Melia, was no longer a member of the party. Supporters of Nika Melia criticized this statement as “shameful” and “inhuman.” Specifically, Khabeishvili informed TV “Formula” that Melia “is not a member of the National Movement” and cannot speak on its behalf.

In response to Khabeishvili’s comment, a party statement was released, echoing his words and noting that “this issue is closed, and the party will not provide further comments.”

Public universities prohibited the President to hold pro-EU campaign

On 30 November, President Salome Zurabishvili expressed frustration, stating that the rector of Tbilisi State University (TSU) denied students the opportunity to set up tables within the university premises to collect signatures for the “Our Voice for Europe” petition.

The President also highlighted the cases of pressure on schoolchildren during her recent visits to villages. She stressed that municipal representatives refused to meet her or diplomats attending events focused on Georgia’s European path. Additionally, she mentioned pressure on school students not to attend, which she found unacceptable. Zurabishvili also criticized the Tbilisi State University (TSU) rector for not allowing students to sign the seemingly non-political statement.

According to Zurabishvili, the TSU rector justified the decision by claiming that political events cannot be held within the university building. However, the President argued that the petition’s text is entirely apolitical.

On the same day, Niko Managadze, the founder of the student movement “For Freedom,” announced that state universities in Tbilisi, Kutaisi, and Zugdidi had declined President Zurabishvili’s request to deliver a public lecture to students.

Shalva Kirtadze, the Rector of Kutaisi Akaki Tsereteli State University, confirmed the President’s request for a public lecture. The university explained that the current exam period made it inappropriate to host such an event.

 

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