On July 11, 2013 first the Georgian-Russian forum on cooperation between nongovernmental organizations of Georgia and Russia was held in Tbilisi.
Forum topic: «Problems and prospects in development of civil society and Georgian-Russian relations».
26 Russian human rights organizations from Kaliningrad to Ural have participated in forum. Georgia was represented by 17 social activists. Totally 60 have visited forum.
Forum objective: formation of permanent basis for dialogue between nongovernmental organizations of Russia and Georgia to implement bilateral projects.
On forum important issues in effective cooperation between nongovernmental organizations and civil society were being discussed. They have covered current questions in development third sector of Russia and Georgia, as well as degree and opportunity to have influence on conflict between two countries.
There were four session during forum:
1. «Problems and prospects in development of Russian-Georgian relations».
2. «Development of nongovernmental organizations and independent media in Russia and Georgia.»
3. Human rights and established practice in applying the law: Russian and Georgian experience»
4.Visa issues and what nongovernmental organizations can do to change current situation»
The last problem is very important as there is a barrier to get Russian visa for Georgian citizens compared to Russians who have a right to cross the border without visa.
Russians participants of forum met with Minister of Georgia Paata Zakraeshvily about reintegration where they discussed problematic questions of human rights society of two countries (penitentiary system, fight against crimes and corruption). Also where he finds benefits from cooperation of Russia and Georgia. According to Paata Zakreashvily all organizations have huge potentials and there we should find ways to develop relations between two countries.
They have visited President Palace in Georgia, Justice House where Russian participants found out more about administrative reform and governmental services procedures and quality control, so called «supermarket» of services.
In Justice House 450 people are working and about 14 000 transactions are being performed. There is a cafe where you can order all services provided by Justice House. For instance, passport preparation takes 4 days, for 200 lari you can make a passport during one hour.
Forum providers and all participants came round to opinion that such meetings between human defenders must be held more often. Agreement reached on organizing the second forum next year in Batumi.