Today: Tuesday, 28 May 2024 year

The Parliament of Georgia adopted the law on foreign agents in the second reading.

The Parliament of Georgia adopted the law on foreign agents in the second reading.

In Georgia, deputies passed the bill on foreign agents in the second reading by a majority vote; the broadcast was broadcast on the website of the legislative body.

“Eighty-three are in support, 23 are against. The project was adopted in the second reading,” parliament speaker Shalva Papuashvili said.

Now, according to established procedures, the document must be considered in the committee and at the plenary meeting in the third reading. According to Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze, the vote should take place in two weeks.

As the country’s President Salome Zurabishvili previously stated, if parliament approves the law in the final reading, she will veto it. At the same time, the legislative body can overcome it; this requires a simple majority of votes of deputies.

Today’s meeting took place against the backdrop of a protest against the adoption of this document in the courtyard of the parliament building.

On March 7, 2023, the Parliament of Georgia adopted the bill on foreign agents in the first reading. After this, mass rallies began in the capital of the country, which the police had to disperse using tear gas and water cannons. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, 133 people were detained at the demonstrations in those days. Authorities later withdrew the document.

On April 3, the ruling Georgian Dream party reintroduced a controversial bill called “On Transparency of Foreign Influence.” They explained that now, instead of the term “agent of foreign influence,” the text uses the wording “an organization pursuing the interests of a foreign force,” and the rest of the content remains the same.

The initiative provides for the registration of non-profit legal entities and media whose income, in particular more than 20 percent, comes from abroad. In addition, all organizations pursuing “foreign forces’ interests” must be registered in the state registry. On April 17, the parliament of the republic adopted the bill in the first reading with 83 votes.

Protests have resumed in Tbilisi demanding the withdrawal of the document.