EU Delegation Urges CSO Inclusion in EU Reforms Process

The European Union’s Delegation to Georgia urged the participation of civil society organizations in the process of fulfilling the European Commission’s 12 recommendations for EU candidate status, stating, “We encourage all Georgian stakeholders to ensure that relevant NGOs are invited and able to meaningfully participate in all working groups, including on electoral reform.”

“Priority #10 [of the EC’s recommendations] on involvement of CSOs in decision-making processes is particularly relevant to ongoing work in Parliament,” it emphasized in the 19 August tweet.

The EU Delegation’s statement comes a day after the ruling Georgian Dream party chose not to invite the International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED), one of the most influential CSOs working on elections, to the first meeting of the electoral reforms working group meant to develop the legislative changes necessary for candidate status.

That decision was criticized by both the civil society sector and the opposition. Among them, the CSO Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association (GYLA), which was invited to participate, left the meeting in protest.

The ruling party claimed that its decision was based on the fact that ISFED had lost its “neutrality.”

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