(Tbilisi) The Georgian Foreign Minister assured Friday that his government was doing everything possible to ensure that Georgia obtained the status of candidate for the European Union, while his French counterpart called on this Caucasian country to put in place ” courageous reforms”.
“We still have steps to take, we are all very motivated, we all have the objective of fulfilling the obligations” of the EU, underlined Ilia Dartchiashvili, promising to go “further, faster”, during a joint press conference with Catherine Colonna after a meeting in the Georgian capital Tbilisi.
The French minister, for her part, urged seizing this “historic opportunity” by taking “decisive steps on the 12 recommendations” from Brussels.
Brussels is asking Tbilisi in particular for reforms in terms of justice, the electoral system, freedom of the press and the fight against the oligarchs.
“Courageous reforms are needed to guarantee the independence and impartiality of the judiciary, to protect institutions from the influence of private interests, to guarantee media freedom and pluralism”, underlined Catherine Colonna.
The Georgian minister estimated that a “large part of the recommendations” was already “in place”, with the implementation of more than 80 legislative texts on this subject.
However, “there is still a long way to go,” warned Catherine Colonna.
On the other hand, she welcomed the fact that polls showed that 85% of the population was in favor of the EU.
“It’s a sobering number that points the way forward,” she commented.