31/05/2024 GIP

Georgian Dream Party Reintroduces and Passes the Draft Law on Foreign Agents: Why Now?



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The Georgian Dream party’s contentious choice to reintroduce the foreign agents draft law on April 3, despite its prior withdrawal amidst widespread public unrest, has generated significant domestic and global scrutiny. The decision came as a surprise, especially in the context of the upcoming parliamentary elections in October 2024, where the Georgian Dream was expected to receive a higher number of votes than any other political party. Complicating matters further, Georgia’s attainment of EU candidate status in December 2023 was contingent upon meeting specified Commission recommendations, rendering the timing of the draft law’s revival particularly contentious. The bill incited unparalleled nationwide protests, extending beyond the capital and resonating across the entirety of Georgia. However, undeterred by ongoing protests and international censure, the ruling party proceeded to pass the controversial foreign agents’ legislation in its conclusive third reading on May 14 and the Parliament overturned the president’s veto on May 28.

At the request of the Georgian Institute of Politics (GIP), a selection of experts from different countries responded to the following questions:

  1. What are the factors that influenced the Georgian Dream party’s decision to reintroduce the draft law at this specific moment, considering the context?
  2. How will the adopted law impact the electoral landscape of Georgia in particular, and the country at large?

Expert Comments #26 | May 2023

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