Joint statement of non-governmental organizations
We, the non-governmental organizations signing below, are voicing our concern regarding the government’s inadequate reaction to the widely circulating allegations made by Ivane Merabishvili on December 16.
Non-governmental organizations have repeatedly requested that an investigation be launched regarding the above information. While the law clearly requires the prosecutor and the investigative unit of the Ministry of Corrections and legal Assistance to launch an investigation in such cases, the fact speaks for itself that as of now no full-fledged investigation has been conducted as regards this information. Unfortunately, the activities of the authorities in this respect were limited to the so–called service scrutiny held by the Ministry of Corrections.
The outcomes of the inspection carried out by the Inspectior General’s office of the Ministry of Corrections and Legal Assistance raised additional questions in the community and reiterated the need for conducting a comprehensive and timely investigation. The already existing doubts were intensified by the contradictory statements of the Minister of Corrections naming different timeframes for storing recordings from the surveillance cameras mounted in the prison and Mr. Merabishvili’s cell.
The undersigned organizations once again call upon the relevant authorities to launch an investigation into the incident compliant to the law to ensure that the information provided by the former Interior Minister Ivane Merabishvili is subject to comprehensive scrutiny and that legitimate questions circulating among the public receive exhaustive answers.
The Democratic Initiative (GDI)
International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED)
Transparency International Georgia
The Georgian Young Lawyers' Association (GYLA)
Media Development Fund (MDF)
Human Rights Education and Monitoring Center (EMC)