Tbilisi. The undersigned organizations would like to respond to the statement of H.E. Hubert Knirsch, the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to Georgia, posted on the embassy’s official Facebook page on June 25.
The statement was in response to the Georgian NGOs’ critical assessment of Ms. Sopio Kiladze’s nomination for the membership to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC). Ms. Kiladze is the member of the Parliament of Georgia.
We believe that the state-nominated candidate in Georgia vastly lacks personal and professional integrity and is notorious for her openly confrontational attitude to the civil society that is critical of her public statements and work. There have been myriad of well-documented instances of Ms. Kiladze’s verbal abuse of human rights defenders and activists, homophobic and discriminatory public statements, public display of selective approaches to human rights protection, particularly with regard to the LGBTQI community and children. This has been the common practice of the candidate to such an extent that the civil society had to resort to the various forms of open protest on several occasions[i]. Various international and local organizations and the media have reported these facts.
We would, therefore, like to underline that the statement made by the NGOs is not an attack of a personal nature, but the candid assessment of the facts that disqualify the nominated candidate from taking the CRC membership. It is not only desirable, but also the duty of the civil society organizations to call out such a lack of integrity, selective application of human rights by the candidate and disregard of the procedures by the nominating state.