In Quotes: Politicians on LGBTQ Rights in Georgia

Today on the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, and Transphobia, Tbilisi Pride, a local organization uniting LGBTQ and rights activists, hosted a panel discussion on LGBTQ rights in Georgia, with opposition party leaders in attendance. The discussion was preceded by yesterday’s Tbilisi Pride-brokered agreement, as 15 political parties pledged to fight to eliminate discrimination and violence against LGBTQ citizens with all mechanisms at their disposal.

Below is a compilation of some of the remarks from the panel discussion on LGBTQ rights: 

Khatia Dekanoidze, United National Movement: “The response of law enforcement agencies toward violent people is not adequate. This is forming a very dangerous trend in this country.”

Giga Bokeria, European Georgia: “Today, members of the LGBTQ community and rights defenders are physically vulnerable. If this problem is not solved by the state, it will be impossible to start a dialogue.”

Sergo Chikhladze, Strategy Agmashenebeli:By signing [the agreement], we [Strategy Aghmashenebeli] took responsibility to implement of the Constitution. Since the Georgian Dream has not signed, it is interesting which point of the Constitution it disagrees with.”

Tamar Kordzaia, Republican Party: “There should be an article in the Electoral Code that provides for the deregistration of a candidate whose [election] campaign is based on hatred.”

Tako Charkviani, Law and Justice: “The people who are abusive to the LGBTQ group will hopefully someday reevaluate events and realize that they themselves are victims of misinformation.”

While the ruling Georgian Dream party has not signed the agreement and did not attend today’s panel discussion, Levan Karumidze, the ruling party MP took to Twitter to mark the day.

Levan Karumidze, Georgian Dream: “Happy Int.[ernational] Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia. Today we celebrate the communities around us in need of our support, and denounce all forms of discrimination against LGBTIQ+ persons.” 

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