Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili congratulated the citizens of Georgia on the Day of Independence on 26 May. "The idea of independence is the cornerstone on which the statehood of the country is based. We should build democratic institutions on this cornerstone in order to become worthy and full members of the civilized world. This is a complicated way that we should walk responsibly. We are obliged to move Georgia to a civilized lifestyle of a democratic country," Ivanishvili said in his address.
The Prime Minister touched upon the issue of Georgia's main challenges. "We are the country of big traditions, but we almost have no experience of living in conditions of democracy. All of us – the government and the people – should learn this. Democratic values, human rights, EU and NATO membership, improved relations with the neighbors, de-occupation, establishment of rule of law, free courts and media – these are the issues that are inseparable from the idea of Georgia's independence. These are our main challenges," Ivanishvili said.
He pointed out that everyone is "equal before the law." "I promise that I will resist any injustice. Eventually everyone will be equal before the law in my country despite their ethnic, religious or sexual belonging. I promise you that nobody will be punished for being different, for free expression, for free speech. We are devoted to our traditions and customs, but creating new ones is an integral part of the Georgian tradition too. We should be respectable not only for keeping our traditions, but for respecting others' customs and traditions too. We should always be critical towards xenophobic and homophobic ideologies locked inside pseudo traditionalism, as well as towards everything foreign, towards unthoughtful copying of something new," the PM stated.
Ivanishvili congratulated Georgian soldeirs participating in the peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan on Independence Day, saying that the society is united under one common goal: democratic Georgia where different points of view are respected. "We should become a stabile and economically attractive country. We should do our best to turn our Abkhaz and Ossetian brothers towards us and built the country which will be a homeland for everyone," he said "I would like to especially congratulate our soldiers participating in the peacekeeping mission. Their heroism and sacrifice is in service of defending our statehood. It is important for us that the representatives of all nationalities, ages, social groups and minorities play their role in building Georgia's future. We all are united with one common goal: democratic Georgia. Our aim is to build the country where different points of views are respected, where people's choices are respected, where just laws are in action and the law is obeyed, where court decisions are impartial, and business is free," the PM added.