Georgia announces activation of Inter-Agency Task Force for Free and Fair Elections

Tbilisi, 27 March 2008 -the President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili, today reactivated the Inter-Agency Task Force for Free and Fair Elections (IATF), a body first set up to ensure the extraordinary elections of 5 January 2008 would be run in accordance with internationally accepted standards.

The IATF is a body that coordinates the work of those key state entities responsible for various aspects of the election, including the smooth running of Election Day, updating the citizen registries used by the Central Election Commission to refresh electoral rolls, and the prevention and repression of fraud.

The IATF is thus tasked with ensuring that the Parliamentary Elections scheduled for 21 May are run in the fairest and freest way possible.

The IATF is comprised of the following representatives:

·Ministry of Justice: the Minister /Nikoloz Gvaramia/ and the First Deputy Minister /Tinatin Burjaliani/, responsible for the civil registries and to ensure that the electoral law is respected,

·Ministry of Internal Affairs: the Deputy Minister /Ekaterine Zghuladze/ and the Head of the Ministry's Analytical Department /Shota Utiashvili/, responsible for policing,

·Ministry of Foreign Affairs: the Deputy Minister /Grigol Vashadze/ and the Deputy Head of the Department for International Organizations /Sergi Kapanadze/, responsible for the electoral rights of Georgians abroad, for the liaison with the diplomatic corps and with the thousands of international observers invited to come and see the election,

·Ministry of Regional Coordination: the Minister /Davit Tkeshelashvili/, responsible for coordination with the regions and the local authorities,

·General Prosecutors Office: Head of Legal Department /Tinatin Goletiani/.

The IATF's mission includes transparency. Accordingly, its meetings may be attended by observers and other state agencies.

The IATF will be presented to domestic and international observer organizations and Diplomatic Corps on March 28, 18:00.

Press Office
of the President of Georgia

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