Public Defender Addresses Ministry of Internal Affairs

The Public Defender of Georgia calls on the Ministry of Internal Affairs to take proactive preventive measures with regard to the intention of the Georgian March to block the entrances to the Tbilisi and Batumi cinemas during the premiere of a movie - And We Dance. It is important that law enforcement agencies ensure the safety of both the LGBT+ community and the guests of the premiere.

The Public Defender sent an official letter to the Minister of Internal Affairs on 5 November 2019 and asked him to take preventive measures.

The Public Defender explains that the right to assembly protects only the right to peaceful assembly and not the acts aimed at restricting the rights and freedoms of others. For this purpose, the Law of Georgia on Assemblies and Demonstrations imposes certain obligations on the organizers and participants of such actions; inter alia, it prohibits the blockage of the entrances to the premises during assemblies and demonstrations.

Accordingly, the Public Defender calls on the organizers and participants of the planned demonstration to refrain from violating the rules of organizing and holding a demonstration, including blocking the entrances to the cinemas. The Georgian legislation provides for both administrative and criminal liabilities for the breach of these obligations due to the seriousness of the violation.

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