It has been two years since the tragic developments of November 7, 2007, when law enforcement officers unlawfully used excessive force to disperse peaceful rally participants, raided independent television and destroyed its equipment, used special means that were illegal at the given time; as a result at least 500 people were injured.
Although authorities have formally acknowledged that the November 7 lessons were learned, noted developments haven’t been thoroughly investigated; those who gave orders and those who executed these orders haven’t been indentified.
“Despite repeated calls from key international actors... the government [of Georgia] has refused to launch a comprehensive investigation into the events of November 7, 2007,” – says the World Report 2009 of Human Rights Watch.
According to the Law on the Police of Georgia, the police of Georgia shall secure “protection of public safety and order, human rights and freedoms from unlawful encroachment”. When protection of the rule of law is the main responsibility of the police, violation of the law on their part destroys system of justice. Violent events outside the main Tbilisi police department on May 6 and June 15, 2009, were the result of faulty operation of the system. During the events dozens of citizens we re injured due to unlawful acts of the police officers, encouraged by the impunity. As it was the case on November 7, the authorities refused to launch independent investigation and to hold accountable those who were responsible for the incident.
GYLA reminds the authorities of Georgia obligations it has undertaken under the Constitution of Georgia, international agreements and domestic law and calls to ensure independent investigation of the November 7, 2007, May 6 and June 15, 2009 events; to identify and hold responsible those who gave the unlawful order and those who executed it; to take effective measures to eliminate the syndrome of impunity in law enforcement bodies.