On 29 November, 42 prosecutors, inspectors and staff members of the Human Rights Department of the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs received their certificates of completion of the HELP (Human Rights Education for Legal Professionals). The course participants completed a 3-month online HELP course on violence against women and domestic violence which was a joint effort by the Council of Europe, the Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia and the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia. The participants are now trained on the key concepts, the international and European legal framework and the European case law governing the prevention and protection of women and girls from violence, focusing in particular on the Council of Europe Istanbul Convention.
In addition to training justice professionals, the Council of Europe has provided expert support to review the prosecutions guidelines on domestic violence for the Chief Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia in line with the standards of the Istanbul Convention. The report and recommendations provided by the Council of Europe were also discussed on 29 November with the Chief Prosecutor’s Office and specialised prosecutors on domestic violence. The prosecution guidelines will be revised in 2019 based on these recommendations. The aim is to strengthen the prosecution response to cases of violence against women and domestic violence and to better protect women against all forms of violence in Georgia.
The Council of Europe has also supported steps to strengthen multi-agency co-operation along the justice chain in Georgia by organising on 30 November a working meeting for prosecutors, judges and lawyers, including representatives from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Supreme Court, to discuss achievements and gaps in the implementation of the Istanbul Convention in Georgia. The meeting was held within the framework of the Council of Europe project “Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence in Georgia”. Similar meetings are planned for 2019.