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Activists of the 'Change' and 'It Is a Shame' Were Judged under the Soviet Time Administrative Code

09.01.2020

 
Human Rights Center defended the legal interests of the civil activists of the civil campaigns “Change” and “It Is a Shame”, who protested the political statements of Erekle Kukhianidze, the member of the Tbilisi City Assembly.

On December 17, 2019, the activists of the civil campaigns “Change” and “It Is a Shame” erected a tent in the working room of the deputy Erekle Kukhianidze in the building of the City Assembly and requested him to quit the mandate. They protested Kukhianidze’s statement in the social network, with which he insulted Doctor Vazha Gaprindashvili, who was captured by the occupation regime of Tskhinvali region, and his family. The security officers of the Tbilisi City Assembly could not remove the activists from the room and patrol police arrived on the place, who expelled the activists from the building by force.

On December 20, Judge Lela Mildenbeger at the Administrative Panel of the Tbilisi City Court found the civil activists guilty in the violation of the Articles 166 and 173 of the Administrative Code of Georgia and imposed fines on them. There was high risk that she would impose administrative imprisonment on them.

The Constitution of Georgia declares the right to peaceful assembly and manifestation as fundamental right and protects it, but in practice, we often observe unlawful and illegal interference in the realization of these rights. The main problem is the Administrative Code of Georgia, which was adopted during the soviet time, in 1984, by the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Georgia; however, our judiciary authority still uses it.

Today, like in the past years, the Articles 166 and 173 of the Administrative Code are often applied against peaceful protesters. The police unlawfully interfere in the implementation of the rights and do not allow the demonstrators to peacefully protest.

Human Rights Center believes it is also significant problem that the court does not control interference into this right that means there is no possibility to restore the breached rights. The case of the four civil activists judged under the articles 166 and 173 of the Administrative Code of Georgia clearly demonstrates the problem. 

Human Rights Center 

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