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Human Rights Center Believes Georgian Model of Pardon Mechanism Needs Improvement and Not Substantial Amendments

13.12.2015

 
Press-Release

Human Rights Center believes the acting model of the pardon mechanism in Georgia shall not be substantially amended but be improved so that the implementation of the constitutional authorities by the President did not raise questions among society – people who are the source of this exclusive authority.

Recent noisy discussions about the pardon mechanism clearly demonstrated its challenges and problems. On the one side the Prime Minister recommended the Parliament of Georgia to start working on the model of pardon mechanism which will ensure participation of the Georgian Patriarch in the process; and on the other side the former chairman of the pardon commission made statement about alleged corruptive deals in the process of pardoning convicts.

Human Rights Center has long experience of working on the cases, where convicts apply for pardoning; very often convicts complain about the process. The pardon acts issued by the President often cause anxiety of prisoners.

The questions refer to the work of pardon commission and some aspects of the president’s decisions. For example, the resolution on pardon mechanism states that the President of Georgia may pardon a person convicted for any crime through ignoring the pardon rules and requirements and neglecting the opinion of the pardon commission at any time that may contain some threat of misuse of this power. Unfortunately, in our recent history we had cases when the President misused this power and acted according to his political sympathy and vague motives to support allies.

To identify these problems and work on their resolution Human Rights Center has been studying the Georgian and foreign models of pardon mechanisms with financial support of the Open Society Georgia Foundation since July 2015. The organization has already finalized the study of models in democratic states like the USA, Austria, Bulgaria, Ireland, Poland, Romania, Hungary, Croatia and Czech Republic.

Based on the survey results, Georgian model needs improvement to make it more well-grounded and predictable in respect of procedures that will make the human mechanism of pardon more effective. 

Human Rights Center  

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