PACE Georgia monitors concerned at violence, call for calm before the elections

Boriss Cilevics (Latvia, SOC) and Kerstin Lundgren (Sweden, ALDE), co-rapporteurs for the monitoring of Georgia by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), have expressed concern at the increasing tensions, mutual accusations and violent incidents in the country ahead of this week’s election, culminating in the lamentable bomb attack on an opposition MP’s car.

“These tensions and acts of violence should not be allowed to harm the election process. All stakeholders should take all necessary steps to reduce the tension and to refrain from any acts that could undermine the democratic election process. Moreover, all contestants should make it explicitly clear to their supporters that violence has no place in a democratic environment and is unacceptable,” said the two co-rapporteurs.

In addition they emphasised the need for prompt and transparent investigation of all reports of violence. “Even the perception of impunity for such acts can be harmful to public trust in the election process,” they added.

The two co-rapporteurs will observe the upcoming elections as part of the Assembly’s election observation mission.