Russian Interference In Georgia Latest Attempt To Derail European Unity

27 May 2024

Labour MEP candidate for Dublin Aodhán Ó Ríordáin today said that Russian interference in internal Georgian politics is the latest effort to derail the legitimate European aspirations of aspiring members.

Georgia has been gripped by civil resistance opposed to the government’s attempt to pass a foreign agent law, seen by many as an attempt to silence opposition and cut Georgia off from pro-democracy and pro-European supporters.  The government has used violence and intimidation against those protesting this Russian-inspired law.

Deputy Ó Ríordáin said:

“Last Autumn Georgia was granted EU candidate status and it aspires to join the EU.  However, under Russian influence, the government introduced a foreign agent law, which has sparked massive protest in Georgia.

“Not only does this law stifle opposition and pro-Europe voices in Georgia it also erects a significant obstacle to Georgia’s entry to the EU.

“Last week seven EU states, including the Baltic countries, wrote to the Chair of the Georgian parliament highlighting the fact that the foreign agent law is contrary to the EU norms and values.

“It is now clear that not only is the foreign agent law designed to silence civil society in Georgia, it is also intended to block Georgia’s route to EU membership. This serves Russia’s interests as Putin seeks to destabilize the European Union.

“The aggressive, destructive stance of Putin’s regime is the greatest threat to the European Union. We see the horror that this inflicts everyday on Ukraine. Putin’s intentions don’t stop there and there is a very real and legitimate concern especially in the Baltic countries that they are next in Putin’s sights. This is a time for solidarity and unity in Europe against Putin’s agenda, a unity that unfortunately some Irish MEPs in the European Parliament can’t bring themselves to support.”

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