Public Defender Meets with Tbilisi State University Students

On June 15, 2022, Public Defender Nino Lomjaria met with the chancellor, administration and students of the Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University, who have been holding protests for a month now.

Students have several demands, including the right to take exams remotely and the availability of dormitories.

"Dormitories are the main demand and problem of the students. We have two student dormitories in Tbilisi, the relatively new and well-equipped one is located near Lisi Lake; however, the number of free places is limited there and it cannot accommodate all the students. Another dormitory is located in Bagebi, where the living environment is degrading and life-threatening. No one should be living there in the 21st century and no university should offer students to live in similar conditions," the Public Defender said.

Nino Lomjaria stressed that students do not ask for benefits in exams. They ask for assistance due to their social status, so that the studies and examinations could be adapted to their difficult socio-economic conditions, especially since thousands of them have their status suspended just because they failed to pay their tuition.

At the meeting with the university chancellor, the Public Defender spoke about the importance of dialogue with students, stressed the need to adapt university policy to the student's needs and expressed readiness for mediation between the opposing parties.

"I ask the university administration and the Ministry of Education to take the issues seriously, to consider the problems of thousands of students. First they need to start honest conversations with students. I also think that the university must solve the problem of dormitories in the long run," the Public Defender said at the end of the meeting.

The chancellor said that the administration will definitely continue meetings and talks with students and will work intensively to find solutions to the problems.

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