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Court Orders Police to Publicize Names of Abusive officials

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, January 29
(TBILISI) - Georgia’s Court of Appeals has upheld the verdict of Tbilisi City Court, which obliges the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) to publicize the names of abusive officials, who were involved in domestic violence cases.

The Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Partnership for Human Rights (PHR) addressed the MIA in February and March 2016, requesting the information whether the Ministry had issued any restraining or protective orders against political officials. However, the MIA stated this information was personal and confidential.

Afterwards, the NGO addressed Tbilisi City Court, which ordered MIA to make the information public, including “the President of Georgia; Members of Parliament of Georgia; Prime Minister and other members of the Government of Georgia; Members of the Supreme Representative Body of Abkhazia and Adjara and Heads of Governments of the Autonomous Republics of Abkhazia and Adjara.”

Interior Ministry appealed the decision of the City Court, however, on January 26, 2018, the Court of Appeals upheld the decision of the City Court.

The PHR representative, Ana Arganashvili says that such information about state officials should be public and the society should know whether the people, who define Georgia’s political future, are abusers or not.

The MIA has not made any official statement whether they are going to appeal the verdict in the Supreme Court of Georgia or not.

Domestic violence is an acute problem in Georgia. In the period of January-September 2017, 1439 cases of domestic violence were recorded by MIA, which is 83 cases more compared to the same period of 2016.

In 9 months of 2017, the Ministry of Internal Affairs issued 3,137 restrictive orders on domestic violence, while in 2016 2,910 orders were issued. This number was less in 2015-2.598, 2014 – 817 orders and 2013-227.

MIA claims that rising figures are caused by the fact that addressing police on domestic violence has increased, and but not theactual number of crimes. The Ministry assures they will properly react to all cases of violence, adding it is one of MIA’s priorities.