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EU mediator Christian Danielsson meets with president of Georgia, ruling and opposition parties

By Khatia Bzhalava
Tuesday, March 30
EU mediator Christian Danielsson arrived in Tbilisi on Sunday for the second time this month to help the ruling and opposition parties complete the negotiation process. Yesterday, he met with President Salome Zurabishvili and held a meeting with the Georgian Dream party and several opposition parties.

At Danielsson’s meeting with President Zurabishvili at the Orbeliani Palace, where the sides discussed the ongoing political consultations, Zurabishvili stressed the importance of de-escalating the political crisis and the EU’s active involvement in overcoming the post-pandemic economic crisis.

After the meeting with Danielsson held behind closed doors at the EU Delegation to Georgia office, GD party Chairman Irakli Kobakhidze stated that under no circumstance would an early election be held. Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili announced that the government is ready for fair and rational compromise. He stressed that there would be no destructive steps coming from the ruling party. “On the contrary, the opposition has disrupted the dialogue and made no compromises,” said Garibashvili. The PM once again ruled out the possibility of early elections, stating that the results of the 2020 parliamentary elections in Georgia had been recognized by the whole world. He also added that there are no political prisoners in the country.

Later yesterday, Danielsson met with the representatives of the political party Lelo, Strategy Aghmashenebeli, Girchi – More Freedom, European Georgia, United National Movement, and Labour party. After the meeting, Zura Japaridze, the leader of Girchi- More Freedom stated that the recent meeting did not provide any hopes to say that steps had been taken forward. “After this meeting, I find it difficult to say whether we will reach an agreement or not… If no agreement is reached, the crisis will deepen and this country will be in an even worse situation," Japaridze said.

In the evening, Danielsson held a press conference and stated that compromises are required from all sides. According to him, signing the document is an opportunity for the leaders to demonstrate their democratic maturity and the aim is to build a sustainable framework that will address the lack of systemic reform to increase the public confidence in the electoral process and judiciary.

“Let me remind you that if an agreement is reached, there will be no winners or losers. There will be only winners. And in particular, one main winner will be the people of Georgia. So tonight I call on all the parties to ensure that tomorrow Georgia is the winner,” said Danielsson at yesterday’s press conference. He didn’t specify the details of the meetings; however, he stated that the document would be ready later on Tuesday.