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Margvelashvili Says Why He Doesn’t Unveil His Goals for Presidential Race

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Monday, July 23
President Giorgi Margvelashvili says that the Georgian Dream ruling party is waiting for his decision on the upcoming presidential elections.

Margvelashvili claims that with his decision not to speak out his plans for the elections, he “gives a good service” both to the ruling team and the opposition.

“If I say that I will not participate in the elections, they [the Georgian Dream] will nominate the individual who will have no influence and courage to oppose the decisions of influential people in the party. Such a candidate is in their interests. However, if I raise my candidacy, they will be forced to nominate a stronger figure,” Margvelashvili said.

The president, who was nominated by the Georgian Dream and its billionaire leader Bidzina Ivanishvili in 2013, claims that the opposition has not yet decided about the upcoming race and with his silence he is giving them time to come to consensus.

The ruling party members, many of whom criticize the president quite frequently, say that “many in their team” will defeat Margvelashvili if he participates in the race.

“Margvelashvili believes that the sun is moving around him, which is far from the reality. We announced our plans long before and we are scheduled to nominate our presidential candidate either at the end of July or in the beginning of August,” said the Georgian Dream parliamentary majority leader Archil Talakvadze.

Former parliament Speaker, one of the most experienced politicians in Georgia David Usupashvili has offered consultations to the president over the upcoming elections and a new political force which “will be able to defeat” the Georgian Dream in the 2020 parliamentary elections.

Margvelashvili accepted the talks which are expected to be held in the coming days.

Margvelashvili, who had served as the Education Minister after the 2012 parliamentary elections when the Georgian Dream defeated the nine-year rule of the United National Movement, was Ivanishvili’s pick for the 2013 presidential elections.

However, when elected in the post his relations with Ivanishvili went down.

Ivanishvili told the media that Margvelashvili “expressed a different character” when he was elected to the post.

Margvelashvili has not spoken out the reasons openly, but his relationship with most of the Georgian Dream members automatically spoiled and a strained attitude between the president and the Georgian Dream representatives has been obvious for the past several years.

on July 16, ten opposition parties nominated a joint presidential candidate from the United National Movement -former Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze.

The European Georgia parliamentary minority nominated former Parliament Speaker David Bakradze as its presidential candidate on Saturday.

There are speculations that the Georgian Dream may raise the candidacy of former Foreign Minister, now independent MP Salome Zourabichvili in the post.

Zourabichvili has neither confirmed nor dismissed the reports.