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Majority MP Says GD Founder Ivanishvili Supports Humane Drug Policy

By Tea Mariamidze
Wednesday, May 23
The Chair of the Healthcare Committee of the Parliament, Akaki Zoidze says that the founder and Chair of the ruling Georgian Dream (GD) party, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili supports adoption of the humane drug policy.

Zoidze made the statement after the GD members gathered to discuss the draft drug policy on Tuesday.

“Bidzina Ivanishvili, as well as all members of the team, supports human drug policy…The positions of members of the majority in connection with the drug policy have moved closer to each other, but consultations will continue,” he stated.

Zoidze says the new draft will be formed by June 7.

However, MP Mirian Tsiklauri, a member of the Parliamentary Majority, says that Ivanishvili did not express his position over the draft and only listened to the views of the party members.

“Ivanishvili just listened to our arguments, so we have not made a final decision. Meetings will continue and we will make a decision that will be acceptable and desirable for the country. Mr. Bidzina’s opinion is very important, but the parliament will make the final decision", he stated.

Irakli Kobakhidze, the Speaker of the Parliament, says that voting might take place in Georgian Dream regarding the drug policy.

“We had a wide-format meeting regarding the drug policy. Some of our members have different views but all of us agree the law must be loyal towards the drug-addicts and harsh towards the drug dealers,” he said.

Kobakhidze expressed hope that the members of the majority will reach an agreement over the issue and the new drug policy will be adopted soon.

A week ago, Prime Minister of Georgia, Giorgi Kvirikashvili said the final draft law on drug policy will include significant liberalization.

“We will have more a humane attitude towards drug-addicts and consumers, including medical services and psycho-rehabilitation centers, but we will also have a very strict approach towards drug dealers," the PM said.

On May 12-13 some NGOs, youth and clubbers held large-scale protest rallies in central Tbilisi, demanding liberal drug policy and condemning the police raids in nightclubs.

The protesters received promise by the governmental officials that a new, more humane drug policy would be adopted by early June.