In an open letter to the U.S. Vice President, Joe Biden, who will arrive in Tbilisi on July 22, the opposition Alliance for Georgia urged the U.S. to facilitate an agreement between the opposition and the authorities on far-reaching democratic reforms and “to stand as guarantor” of those potential agreements.
“The President of Georgia has finally acknowledged the need for wide reaching democratic reforms. Now it is time to ensure that these promises finally become action,” the open letter by the three-party alliance reads.
Irakli Alasania, the leader of Alliance of Georgia, is expected to meet with the U.S. Vice President in Tbilisi. Nino Burjanadze, leader of Democratic Movement-United Georgia and an individual opposition political Levan Gachechiladze are also planned to meet with Biden.
“Early elections could be useful if they give the people an opportunity to express their dissatisfaction through democratic means. However, this election will only be meaningful if the government allows it to take place on a level political playing field. This will require meaningful changes to the electoral process, constitutional reforms and meaningful changes to the media. We believe that the United States can help to facilitate this process,” the Alliance for Georgia said.
In the open letter the alliance, involving Alasania’s newly set up party, as well as New Rights and Republican parties, said proposals laid out by President Saakashvili in his address to the Parliament were not enough for creating proper electoral environment in the country.
“In order to ensure that these reforms are implemented quickly the US government in particular can use the US-Georgia Strategic Partnership Charter to set bench-marks and a timeline for reform,” it said. “This timeline should be agreed by all of the participants in the political process and the US should commit to stand as guarantor of this agreement.”