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Interview with Deputy Minister of Justice Regarding the ECHR Judgment


Nana Sajaia, “Liberali”

-The European Court of Human Rights has partly satisfied the suitor’s request in the case of Enukidze and Girgvliani vs. Georgia. The court has instructed the Georgian state to pay the families €50, 000. As a representative of Georgia at the trial, did you expect this type of judgment from the court?

With trials, you can never predict the outcome of the judgment; this case was no exception either.

The court said they were struck by the coordinated activities of various branches of power with regard to the investigation and they regarded President Saakashvili’s pardon of the convicted murderer as an act of “unreasonable clemency”

Unfortunately, unlike other international courts, the ECHR is keen on using similar terms. I do not agree with their approach in this case; I think the court should evaluate the facts from a legal prospective not from an emotional basis. The above-stated quotation does not provide a lawful evaluation of the case and of course, it could not happen. The pardoning process has nothing to do with the investigation. Though, the court is evaluating the investigation process in this part of the judgment.

According to the judgment, the crimes committed against Girgvliani cannot be ascribed to the state because the offenders did not commit the crime during the preliminarily planned police operation. However, three judges believed the state of Georgia breached a substantive aspect of Article II of the Convention. For example: “the obligation is incumbent upon the State, under both international and internal law, to choose its agents carefully.” Why did the Georgian state fail to foresee these two aspects?

Georgian state had its arguments at the trial which proved that the State did not participate in the crime and could not be responsible for Sandro Girgvliani’s murder. Most members of the court’s jury envisaged our arguments. Individual judges, of course, can have their personal opinions- and in this particular case- they used this resource. However, the court judgment coincides with the decision of the majority.

The Strasbourg Court condemned the government’s negligence on the accusation that the actual murderers and the people from the café were all guilty in the crime. The judgment states: “such a selective approach by the domestic authorities is unacceptable for the court because, in order for an investigation to be effective, its conclusions must always be based on thorough, objective and impartial analysis of all relevant elements.” What is the position of the government of Georgia about this?

The government does not agree with the statement. We believe everything was done for effective investigation within reasonable frames.

The European Court said the State has not properly cooperated with the European Court and did not send requested proofs there in a timely manner. Why didn’t the Georgian government cooperate with the EC?”

Georgia will always cooperate with the ECHR regardless our disagreements with their conclusions and assessments. The same happened in this particular case; we faced some obstacles in getting some requested materials which were sent to archive and the preparation process took some time before we were able to send them to the court.


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Name: Peeuho
2012-07-29 07:45
I don't even know what to say, this made things so much easeir!
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