Coalition: Judges Must Protect the Rights of Peaceful Protestors Arrested at the Rally

The Coalition for Independent and Transparent Judiciary calls upon the relevant judges of the common courts to uphold the constitutional rights of citizens arrested during the peaceful assembly against Russian law. The Coalition urges judges not to make illegal or unjust decisions against detainees and not to encourage arbitrary actions of police in the country.

For two days the public has been protesting against the reinitiated Russian draft law near the Parliament building. The sole intent of the draft law is to marginalize independent and critical Georgian civil organizations and media, stifling freedom of thought in the country. This bill not only distances Georgia from democratic principles but also creates an insurmountable obstacle on its path toward European integration.

Despite the lawful and peaceful nature of the protests taking place near the Parliament building, the police have been using disproportionate force and problematic administrative detention measures against the demonstrators for two days now. This constitutes a severe violation of the constitutionally guaranteed right to assembly and demonstration.

Given the current political and legal context, the trials of arrested demonstrators have gained heightened significance. These judicial proceedings not only determine the legal status of specific individuals but also impact the state of human rights and the protection of constitutional values in the country.

Considering the circumstances outlined above, we call on the judges tasked with hearing the cases of individuals engaged in peaceful assembly to:

  • safeguard the constitutional rights of Georgian citizens and refrain from making illegal or unsubstantiated decisions against them;
  • take appropriate action and refer the case to the relevant law enforcement agency for investigation in instances where there are indications of violence and ill-treatment of citizens by the police.