Political prosecutions, selective justice, abuse of pretrial detention in cases of political opponents, manipulation of judges, political violence and attacks on media.
Overall there is a significant progress on ethnic minority policy since 2004, with improved legislation, more developod infrustructure and specific policies. Though there are serious challenges, both long and short term that need to be addressed by the government
One of the key challenges remains the lack of knowledge of state language by the ethnic minorities, which creates problems for higher education, for their full fledged public and political participation.
Recommendation : review and reassess existing programs to make sure they are measurable, effective in practice and needs based rather than ad hoc, short term campaigns.
Information vacuum – partly because of the lack of the language command ethnic minorities have no access to Georgian news and are fed with outside sources.
The Recommendation is for the Public Broadcaster to ensure media coverage of regions pupulated with ethinc minorities in minority languages.
Another challenge is an issue related to citizenship and residence premits, which arouse from changes to Georgia’s migration legilation in 2014. It left many without the right to live in Georgia. A decision to provide visa free entry for 1 year and temporary residence was an important development but only a temporary and not a comprehensive solution that still keeps them deprived of the rights of citizenship.
Recommendation : adopt legislative changes that would ensure citizenship, rather than visa free residence.
One of the most acute developments of recent 3 years is an increasing trend of hate speech and xenophobic language. Key sources are several media outlets and political parties, including some representatives of the ruling coalition. Moreover, it turned out based on the recent NGO report/survey that the government is financially supporting xenophobic media outlets through placeing advertisments and having special contracts.
1. Government should react and reconsider keeping politicians with xenophobic language in public and political positions
2. Should stop supporting xeophobic media
3. Successful and timely implementation of legislation regarding Repatriation of Persons Internally Displaced by the Former Soviet Union from Georgia in the 40s.
4. Need to adopt a targeted policy towards most marginalized ethnic minority group – Roma
There is increasing trend of violation of Muslims rights in Georgia, since 2014 – 43 cases of vialotions have been observed.
Reccommendation: GoG has to investigate timely cases on violations of religious rights.
The Visit is organized within the project “Involving the regional CSOs in the monitoring of Georgia’s Human Rights’ Commitments through increasing their capacity to present shadow reports to Georgia’s UPR and to Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) in 2015” Funded by the Embassy of The Kingdom of Netherlands in Georgia.