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Ivanishvili prepares for tough negotiations

by | Oct 3, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – The coalition that won the parliament election is putting together a working group to handle relations with the president and the current government. The group will hold consultations in the name of the Georgian Dream coalition.

The Georgian Dream coalition is winning the parliamentary election, which means that the new parliamentary majority will have to govern the country together with the president, who represents another political force. This situation will last at least until the next presidential election, to be held in October 2013.

The coalition’s leader was asked about his further steps and about relations with the president. Bidzina Ivanishvili yesterday said he thinks it would be the most logical step for the president to resign and announce an early presidential election, but many criticized him for this statement, including government officials.

On Wednesday, the coalition leader published a statement on this issue, writing that one of the major goals for the coalition is to provide constitutional order and unrestricted functioning of the government in the process of government change.

The statement says the current constitution makes it unavoidable to have relations between a new parliamentary majority and an opposition-backed president.

“It is necessary to put in order many issues. Accordingly we have set up a working group which represents the coalition and which is authorized to hold consultations with the current president and the government in the name of the coalition.”

The group contains three of the coalition leaders: Irakli Alasania, Davit Usupashvili and Irakli Gharibashvili.

Irakli Alasania and Davit Usupashvili are considered to be the two persons closest to Ivanishvili. Irakli Alasania, who worked for Saakashvili’s government for several years, left his post as UN ambassador after the Russian-Georgian war in August 2008 and since then he has been part of the opposition. He was majoritarian candidate in Zugdidi. His competitor was Roland Akhalaia, former chief prosecutor of Samegrelo region. Akhalaia is a close personal ally of Saakashvili. His son Bacho Akhalaia, was interior minister for a short time, but resigned due to the recent prison abuse scandal. He is seen as the architect of the system of torture in the prisons.

Protesters demanded that he not only was fired, but also put on trial, but Saakashvili did not do this. Roland Khalaia’s other son is the current deputy defense minister. According to preliminary results from the Central Election Commission, Alasania lost to Roland Akhalaia. But Alasania claims there were violations, that protocols were forged, and he is challenging the results in court.

Davit Usupashivli, head of the Republican Party, was majoritarian candidate in one of Tbilisi’s central districts, Saburtalo, and he won by a clear margin.

Irakli Gharibashivil represents Georgian Dream party. But he is not considered to be among the leaders of the party or close to Ivanishvili.

In the statement Bidzina Ivanisvili reminds about his quote number of times saying that he is ready to have constructive relations with the current government, including the president.

“As for my statement told at yesterday’s press-conference about president’s resignation, this is not my or my coalition’s political demand. I only underlined that Georgia’s constitution, which is suited to fit one person’s interest, creates many difficulties in the current political reality and in this reality, resignation could be the best way out for the president,” he writes, explaining that they are not issuing any kind of political ultimatum.

Saakashvili team representatives tell DF Watch the issue is to decide for Ivanishvili and they are ready to cooperate in any form, ‘and to consider that the president was the first who made a statement about cooperation.’

The Georgian president on Tuesday said that his political team lost and they move into opposition but are ready for cooperation.



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