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The opposition defends the Georgian church2009-07-13 15:32
As The New Rights supporters assert, the draft amendments to the Regulatory Standards Law will derogate the essence of the state agreement with the Georgian Orthodox Church. The authorities claim to have been wrongly understood. Perhaps, the opposition is going to use the influence of the church in its fight for the president's resignation.
In Georgia, the Orthodox Church has got its own special role not only in the terms of morals. Its legal rights are confirmed by the Constitution and the Concordat, a special pact concluded with the authorities. According to the law, "Orthodoxy is not just a religion but an essential foundation necessary for the country's revival".
According to the opposition, the authorities are preparing the amendments that would derogate the position of the Concordat in the law hierarchy. Besides, the agreement with the Church will not be adopted by the Parliament, which means that the president will be able to conclude such kind of agreements regardless of the people's will.
According to The New Rights Representative Pikria Chikhradze, the Georgian Patriarchy has never witnessed any amendments to the Regulatory Standards Law. She reminded that the Concordat "separates the Church from the government institutions, simultaneously obliging them to provide assistance to the Orthodox Church which has got its own historical merit for Georgia". According to the law hierarchy, the priority belongs to the Constitution of Georgia, which is followed by the Constitutional Law, and then goes the Constitutional agreement between the Church and the state. According to the amendments, the concordat loses its third place, which means that the Church will lose", - Chikhradze explained.
Earlier, it was Georgi Tsagareishvili, a parliament minority delegate, who paid attention to this paragraph of the suggested amendments. He believes that the draft law makes the Georgian Orthodox Church equal to other confessions. "I think it to be covert and practically undisguised fight against Patriarchy", - Tsagareishvili told the journalists.
If the authorities confess their resistance to the Church it would be similar to political death. That is why the ruling majority representative Murtaz Zodelava soon refuted Tsagareishvili's words. "The whims of this man are beyond any reason. This politician holds briefings on the issues that simply do not exist", - he commented upon the scandalous statement. He was supported by deputy Khatuna Gogorishvili. According to her, the issue of concluding the constitutional agreement with the Orthodox Church is warranted by the constitution, and the Regulatory Standards Law amendment does not prejudice the rights of the Church.