Parliament Session Weekly Review, Extraordinary Session. March 20-22, 2002


Parliament extraordinary session continued discussion of Abkhazia issue in secret.

1. Resolution decree on “Abkhazia issue”

Parliament resolved, that:

· According to October 11, 2001 parliament resolution CIS peacekeepers must leave Abkhazia territory;
· To estimate Georgian population pursuit from Abkhazia as the genocide; and to conduct prosecution   towards initiators of conflict and ethnic cleansing despite of their nationality;
·  To ask International community to estimate Human Rights violation facts as Abkhazia separatist regime has ethnic -discriminative character;
· Georgian authority must define Abkhazia status in Georgia composition in 3 months;
· Parliament interim Commission on Abkhazia problems must represent new decree on main directions of conflict resolution till June 30, 2002;
·  Executive authority must inform parliament of fulfillment of the resolution every three months.

“Revival” faction demanded to cut second part of second paragraph from text as parliament resolution on prosecution against genocide initiators will disturb peace process.  The issue was voted as alternative.

For – 32
Against – 83

Finally, Parliament passed resolution decree taking to account that before the approaches of peace regulation of conflict exists it’s impermissible to solve it forcibly.

For – 148
Against – 0

2. Resolution decree on “illegal alienation of state and private property and contraband in Abkhazia”

Parliament decided to acknowledge illegal every civil-legal acts referring to state and refugee private property alienation in Abkhazia territory since August 14, 1992; Law-enforcement structures were ordered to study such facts; also, all states those physical and juristic persons conducted commerce agreements in Abkhazia should be informed of all juristic acts being acknowledged illegal.
For – 155
Against – 1

3. The statement of Georgian Parliament on Russian Duma statement on March 6, 2002. 

The committees on Foreign relations and Defense and Security prepared statement project.

Statement condemns March 6 statement tone and estimates it as menace and interference in Georgia’s internal issues. It’s said that Russia perceived inadequately USA aid program to Georgia.

Parliament expressed desire Russia-Georgia relations to become friendly again.

For – 144
Against – 2

4. Resolution decree on “election Irakli Bibilashvili as the member of Georgian Supreme Court”

For – 145
Against – 1

5. Resolution decree on “composition of committees of Parliament”

The chairman of Committee on procedures and Rules Rostom Dolidze represented resolution decree.

Committees were composed according to new reality in Parliament and increased number of faction quoting.

For – 124
Against – 0

6. Approval of legislative activity plan of spring session 2002 of Parliament.

For – 110
Against – 0

7. Draft project on “changes and amendments to Georgian law on enterprisers”

It was discussed by simplified rule.

For – 97
Against – 0

8. Draft project on “changes and amendments to Tax code”

The chairman of Tax-Revenue committee Vitali Khazaradze protested, as according to him the bill didn’t pass II hearing paragraph-by-paragraph procedure.

Finally, “Industry” legislative initiative was voted by simplified rule.

For – 134
Against – 1

9. Draft project on “changes and amendments to Georgian bill on “Custom tariffs and taxes”

It was discussed by II hearing.

For – 99
Against – 0

10. Draft project on “changes to Criminal Code of Georgia”

It was discussed by simplified rule.

For – 117
Against – 1

11. President’s remarks on bill accepted by Parliament on “Budgetary authority”

President vetoed the bill. Parliament took decision after rating voting.

For – 133
Against – 9


1. Draft project on “return of ungrounded property obtained by state officials to population”

MP Mikheil Saakashvili represented draft project. It was discussed by I hearing, on principle level.

Three main principles that is base for the bill are:

1. The right of citizen to bring in an action against high rank official to prove the property;
2. New institution of Special Prosecutor;
3. Barrister Judge Court discusses draft project mentioned issues.

According to Saakashvili the bill, that was prepared after anti-corruption seven-men recommendation during his Justice minister period, passed local and International organizations expertise. Famous Georgian scientists participated in its creation. Saakashvili declared that he is ready to keep responsibility on execution after draft law enters into force, as initiator.  

Two-day discussions were dedicated to draft project. The main argument of MPs rejecting as defective was juristic character. From this point of view Valeri Gelbakhiani accused Saakashvili being incompetent and avoiding answers of juristic questions.

Factions supported idea, but had lots of pretenses towards draft law. From this point of view factions “Socialist” and “Revivals” were very active. Also positions were negative on legitimating confiscated property to orthodox church, arguing such decision to be immoral. 

Lots of details were debated (special prosecutor, property confiscation or penalty, interference of parliament investigation commission, precise definition of defendant: 4 thousand declaration objects or more restricted number, barrister judge court institution, etc). Saakashvili in his summarizing speech promised to take into account most of remarks. He hoped to reach agreement with non-radical political groups.