On June 24, 2020, the Justice Minister initiated disciplinary proceedings against Bachana Shengelia, a Georgian notary, over his critical Facebook posts against the government. We believe that the disciplinary proceedings initiated by the Justice Minister create a perception of bias.
The government actions prevented a large-scale spread of the novel coronavirus in the country. It would not be justified to say that the government managed to achieve these results at the expense of massive violations of human rights, however, the process was marred by certain shortcomings.
Recently, representatives of Georgia's partner countries and international organizations have increasingly indicated troubling trends in terms of the country’s democratic development. Along with the electoral system, Western partners' statements focus on the problems of independence of the judiciary and Prosecutor’s Office and prosecution of political opponents.
The Coalition for an Independent and Transparent Judiciary is reacting to important deficiencies of the judicial disciplinary proceedings, which have a negative effect on judicial independence and undermine public trust in the court system.
The process of selection of judges of the Supreme Court started on December 24, 2018, and lasted for almost a year. The authorities’ support for influential judges in the judiciary and the formal process of selection ultimately led the justice system to a grave outcome: on December 12, 2019, the Supreme Court was staffed with 14 judges most of whose integrity and professionalism raise a lot of substantiated questions.