The matter of assessing the integrity of judges cannot be dismissed, as it reflects the desire of the Georgian people to enhance the judiciary and pursue integration into the European Union

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We are addressing the statements made by the Prime Minister and the Speaker of Parliament, who have asserted that the matter of ensuring the integrity of judges through a vetting mechanism is closed. However, the issue of improving the judiciary cannot simply be considered closed. This is due to the fact that the European Commission has designated it as a critical precondition for commencing accession negotiations with Georgia, and EU membership stands as a paramount goal for the Georgian people. The European Commission considers it important to assess the integrity of select group of judges particularly members of the High Council of Justice, Supreme Court judges, court chairpersons, and candidates seeking these roles. 

Currently, there are valid concerns regarding the integrity of individuals holding senior positions within the judiciary, along with questions regarding the ownership of assets inconsistent with their salaries. It is also notable that certain influential judges have faced sanctions from the United States, a strategic partner of Georgia.

We strongly believe that it is in the best interest of both the government and the judiciary to address any concerns raised by Georgian society regarding the integrity of judges and internal matters within the judiciary. If there are no integrity issues among judges, it is puzzling why both political and judicial authorities oppose such a process. 

The objective behind establishing a mechanism to assess the integrity of judges appointed to senior positions and judicial candidates is to foster an impartial judiciary and facilitate integration into the European Union. By prematurely closing this matter contrary to the aspirations of the Georgian people, the government risks undermining the progress towards European integration.

Evaluating the integrity of senior court officials will continue to be pertinent to society until the objectives of establishing an independent judiciary and securing Georgia’s accession to the European Union are accomplished.

We, the undersigned civil society organizations, reiterate our call for the government to acknowledge the challenges within the judiciary and promptly take action to fulfill the conditions outlined in the by the European Commission.

  • Court Watch
  • Transparency International Georgia
  • Democracy Defenders
  • Civil Society Foundation
  • Association of Civil Society Development of Georgia (ACSDG)
  • Civic Idea
  • Eco Centre
  • Civic Engagement and Activism Center (CEAC)
  • Prevention For Progress (PFP)
  • The Aged Women’s Association “Deserving Old Age”
  • Alliance of Women with Disability
  • Georgian Democracy Initiative (GDI)
  • Media ombudsman
  • Woman and Development
  • Partnership for Human Rights
  • Ilia’s Legal House
  • Saorsa
  • Phoenix 2009
  • Human Rights Center
  • Europe-Georgia Institute (EGI)
  • Georgia’s Reforms Associates (GRASS)
  • Rule of Law Centre
  • Black Sea Eco Academy
  • Parents’ Union “Our Children”
  • The Reforms and Research Group
  • Informal Education Youth Center “Sunny House”
  • Public Art Platform
  • Multinational Georgia
  • Sapari
  • Democracy Index Sakartvelo
  • Association for Integration and Development of Persons with Disabilities — Hangi
  • Georgian Association of Children Mental Health
  • Teachers’ Union “Education and the Universe”
  • Caucasus Environmental NGO Network (CENN)
  • Group of Independent Lawyers
  • Democracy Research Institute
  • Saunje
  • Civic Activism and Equality Center
  • Research Institute Gnomon Wise
  • Lanchkhuti Youth Movement
  • Kakhati Community Education and Empowerment Center
  • Caucasus Open Space (COS)
  • Neogeni
  • Law and Public Policy Center
  • LAG Upper Svaneti
  • Rights Georgia
  • Green Alternative
  • Association Dea
  • Feminist Initiatives Foundation
  • Mediaorganization Kutaisipost
  • Euroclub of Kvareli.