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Local Observer Organizations Assess Activities of Inter-Agency Task Force

The Inter-Agency Task Force for Free and Fair Elections (IATF) was established on 13 April 2010. According to the authorities, IATF was formed in order to facilitate the conduct of the 30 May local elections in as transparent and fair an environment as possible by enhancing coordination between different agencies. ITAF was also instructed to engage in active and constructive collaboration with the local and international observer organizations, diplomatic missions and other parties involved in the electoral process.IATF was originally established before the 2008 early presidential election and continued to operate in the run-up to the 2008 early parliamentary elections.The IATF established in 2010 comprises high-ranking officials from the Interior Ministry, the Foreign Affairs Ministry, the Justice Ministry, the Regional Development and Infrastructure Ministry, and the National Security Council. The inclusion of these high-level representatives has been among the most positive traits of the group. By doing so, the government ensured the group's greater efficiency, while also demonstrating, once again, that it considered the conduct of the 30 May elections in a free and fair environment to be particularly important.

2010-06-15 12:56 See more

Preliminary Assessment of Voting and Vote Count Procedures in 2010 Local Elections

The Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association’s preliminary assessment of the voting and vote count procedures in the 30 May 2010 local elections is limited to the Tbilisi, Kutaisi and Batumi electoral districts where GYLA observers monitored the voting, vote count and tabulation procedures in 200 polling stations. At the same time, GYLA’s 30 mobile groups visited more than half of the polling stations in Tbilisi, Kutaisi and Batumi.Voters subjected to control while expressing their will: Aside from several exceptions, the voting took place in a generally calm environment on 30 May. However, the control imposed by the ruling party’s activists over the voters’ expression of their will cast a significant shadow over the positive trends that set these elections apart from the 2008 presidential and parliamentary ballots.

2010-05-31 17:28 See more

GYLA publishes the first interim report on the pre-election environment monitoring results

On April 23 GYLA published the first interim report on the pre-election campaign violations.GYLA is observing pre-election environment in Tbilisi and the following regions of Georgia:Adjara, Guria, Imereti, Shida Kartli, Kvemo Kartli, Kakheti, Mtskheta-Mtianeti and Tbilisi.

2010-04-23 15:36 See more

GYLA’s Special Statement regarding the Fake Report Broadcasted by Imedi TV on March 13

The Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association considers that the report broadcasted by Imedi TV on March 13, 08:00pm during Kronika newscast violates the Law of Georgia on broadcasting and the Broadcasters’ Code of Conduct. On 80:00pm Kronika was reporting that the Russian military forces, including its tank battalion, deployed in the occupied region of Akhalgori declared combat readiness; and they would possibly start marching towards the capital; it also reported about the panic in the cities of Georgia, long queues at patrol stations and department stores. The war report continued for 30 minutes, without any caption saying that the report was fake, which caused the audience to believe that the television was broadcasting a real story.

2010-03-14 17:12 See more

Another Case Brought Against the Batumelebi Journalists

On February 4 the Tbilisi City Court refused to satisfy the complaint by journalists Mzia Amaglobeli and Eter Turadze. The applicants claimed the decision on a fine imposed on them at the Sarpi customs checkpoint to be declared void. On August 15, 2009 Eter Turadze and Mzia Amaglobeli legally crossed the Georgian-Turkish border to obtain newspaper materials.Upon their return they passed all customs procedures without any complications; although, as soon as customs officers noticed that journalists were performing their professional activities, they ordered journalists to leave the customs territory, claiming that they were hindering customs procedures. The journalists requested legal grounds for their expulsion from the territory.  Afterward, they were fined for disobeying lawful order of customs officer.

2010-02-05 07:58 See more

European Court judgment paves way for Georgian victims of Soviet political repression to be compensated

On February 2, 2010 in the case of Kiladze v Georgia the European Court of Human Rights found that a ‘legislative void’ had prevented Klaus and Yuri Kiladze from obtaining compensation to which they were entitled as victims of political repression. The applicants were represented by the Georgian Young Lawyers Association and the European Human Rights Advocacy Centre.  It shall be noted that by now this is the first case of GYLA where judgment was delivered by the European Court.By the noted judgment the European Court ruled in favor of the applicants and found a violation of Article 1 of Protocol 1 to the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to property). The applicants were awarded 4 000 Euros each for compensation of damages. The European Court’s judgment in the Kiladze case is remarkable, as it also requires the Georgian authorities to rapidly introduce the necessary legislative and administrative measures to ensure prompt realization of the judgment.

2010-02-03 06:29 See more

NGO Report on violations of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law during the Russian-Georgian war to be presented to Prosecutor of ICC in the Hague

By the end of February 2009 Georgian NGOs will release a report on violations of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law during the Russian-Georgian war of August 2008. Report will be released with the support of Open Society Georgian Foundation, based on the materials collected by the five Georgian non-governmental organizations, such as: Georgian Young Lawyers' Association, Human Rights Center, Union "21st Century", Article 42 of Constitution, Center for Protection of Constitutional Rights. Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) Mr. Luis Moreno-Ocampo got interested in the report and today representatives of Georgian NGOs will present draft report to the prosecutor and his team in the Hague.

2010-02-02 12:28 See more

GYLA Responds to Arrest of IDPs

The Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association (GYLA) responds to the arrest of Lela Argvliani, Denis Aliokhin and Aza Shengelia who participated in the rally of IDPs on January 28. The arrest was performed by the officers of the Vake-Saburtalo Department of MIA Tbilisi Headquarters. GYLA criticizes the action of the police officers, who prevented GYLA lawyers from defending the arrested.

2010-02-01 07:53 See more

Successful Cases of GYLA Lawyers in December 2009

V.A. vs. and I. and Z.Ch.GYLA provided legal aid to a citizen V.A. who had filed against I.Ch. A traffic accident that occurred in October 21, 2006 was caused by the fault of a citizen I.Ch. V.A. filed for damage compensation.GYLA lawyer and the defendant negotiated a deal; a negotiation...

2010-01-26 08:01 See more

NGOs’ Address to the President of Georgia

To the President of Georgia, Mr. Saakashvili:Upcoming local self-governance elections 2010 is perceived both inside and outside the country as another test of the readiness of the Georgian authority and the political spectrum of the country to hold fair and free elections and promote strengthening of democratic institutions.  The initiative of the ruling party and the president on selecting of the Central Election Commission (CEC) chairperson candidates to be presented to the representatives of opposition parties in CEC in consultation with non-governmental organizations has received positive feedback; but we, the representatives of the 27 non-governmental organizations that have offered you a common candidate have several questions regarding the three candidates that you have ultimately selected; namely:

2010-01-18 08:04 See more