First Deputy Public Defender Participates in Ombudsman’s Summit Held within Eastern Partnership
On March 15-16, 2016, First Public Defender Paata Beltadze visited the Belgian capital of Brussels, where he took part in the Ombudsman’s Summitof the Eastern Partnership countries of the European Neighbourhood Policy. The event was organized by the Polish Commissioner for Human Rights and the European Parliament's Human Rights Subcommittee.
The session, held in the European Parliament's Human Rights Subcommittee, was devoted to the issue of migration and related challenges. For this purpose, representatives of human rights institutions were invited from the Western Balkan countries.
The Deputy Public Defender of Georgia briefly discussed the rights situation of asylum seekers, refugees and persons with humanitarian status in Georgia. He noted that the Public Defender's Office intensively monitors this area, studies problems, summarizes results and provides recommendations for the Government.
The second session was devoted to the EU role in strengthening of national human rights institutions and introduction of high standards of human rights in compliance with the EU Action Plan of human rights and democracy for 2015-2019.
Paata Beltadze stressed the importance of close and fruitful cooperation with the various structures of the European Union in establishment of high standards of human rights. He paid particular attention to the format of the human rights dialogue between the European Union and Georgia and the active participation of the Public Defender in it, which provides good opportunities for consideration of major recommendations of the Public Defender and the human rights challenges, as well as strengthening of accountability of the Government. He also talked about the cooperation of the Public Defender's Office with the intergovernmental commissions responsible for the implementation of the EU visa liberalization and the Association Agenda action plans and expressed hope that the requirements of the political agreements between the EU and the Eastern Partnership member states on establishment of high standards of human rights will increase the degree of ombudsmen's independence and effectiveness of human rights efforts.