NGO presents Torture prevention and victims rehab in Georgia

Batumi News, Georgia
March 12 2004

NGO presents `Torture prevention and victims rehabilitation in
Georgia’

The NGO `Ex Political Prisoners for Human Rights’ presented the EU
financed project on `Torture prevention and victims rehabilitation in
Georgia’.

N. Kakabadze, leader of the organization, told journalists the
project stands as more significant presently than it was during the
forerunning Govt.

When we were working on the project it was very up – to time and of
paramount importance.

The outlook of the recent developments makes it stand as even more
important. Presently, the torture cases have take shape of a routine
and frequency exceeds indices for 2003, Kakabadze said. Kakabadze
said the organization’s watchdogs visited the pre-trial detention
cells, and held seminars for policemen. The watchdog reported on the
torture cases, bringing instances over 20 unwarranted acts of the
policemen.

Kakabadze points to the absence of fundamental human rights’ defense
basis in Georgia; absence of the adequate political, social and
psychological environment and commitment to the task to reach the
strategic goals: to have the independent and unbiased court, NGO-s –
free from prejudice, and to uproot venality among state officers,
power avidity among high ranks, oppression of the independent mass
media and social assistance to the poverty – stricken state.

Leader of the NGO laid stress to the dramatic dwindle of the number
of NGO-s is dwindling.

“NGO-s are either politicized or keep indifference. Georgia had
better image compared with Azerbaijan and Armenia with its freedom
and independence of the NGO activities; We can not boast the same
however’, – Kakabadze said.

Kakabadze pointed to the cases of independent media oppression:
`Banning programs in various TV companies which were tribunes for
democracy is diminishing of independence rate”- Kakabadze warns.

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