Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR)
European section of United Cities and Local Governments

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Governance and citizenship

Georgia - 20.01.2014

CEMR deplores the suspension of mandate of the Mayor of Tbilisi under unclear conditions
During its extraordinary session on 18 December 2013, the civil court of Tbilisi (Georgia) decided on the suspension of mandate of the Mayor of Tbilisi Gigi Ugulava as a preliminary measure, pending trials after he has been charged with mismanagement of public funds.

The Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) shares the deep concerns expressed internationally about the suspension of mandate of a democratically elected official under unclear conditions.

"The autonomy of local and regional authorities is the bulwark of personal liberties, that is the first and fundamental principle upon which our community of local and regional authorities is based", says Frédéric Vallier, Secretary General of CEMR. "We are building a democratic Europe, where democracy and the rule of law are indispensable, and self-governing local authorities are one of the main foundations of any democratic regime."

We call on the Georgian authorities to safeguard the principles of law and presumption of innocence as expressed in the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as to pay full respect to the fundamental principles of local self-government as expressed by the European Charter of Local Self-Government, as Georgia is party to both of these European treaties.

CEMR joins the call by the National Association of Local Authorities in Georgia (NALAG) to the international community to intensify the dialogue with the authorities of Georgia, to monitor the situation and to safeguard local autonomy and local democracy hand in hand with the rule of law especially in view of the forthcoming local elections in June 2014.

NALAG is a non-governmental, nonprofit and non-political organization gathering local government entities. NALAG aims at further developing democracy at the local level, developing the local self-governance system and institutions, and decentralising the government power throughout the country. Since January 2012, NALAG is a member association of CEMR. 
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