Home / Analysis

Analysis

Wave of Drug-related Deaths Reignites Drug Policy Debate

A wave of drug-related deaths over the past two weeks has reignited the nearly year-long debate on Georgia’s drug policy reform, pitting conservative politicians with activists advocating more liberal drug policy. So far, the government dithers, but is leaning towards the hard line. In recent weeks, at least five young …

Read More »

Does Tbilisi’s Peace Step have a Future?

Reconciliation Minister Ketevan Tsikhelashvili presenting the details of the new peace initiative, April 4, 2018. Photo: smr.gov.ge On April 4, the Georgian government presented a new peace initiative under the title of “A step to a better future.” The document was mostly received positively in Georgia, but what future does …

Read More »

Preaching or Teaching?

Patriarchate of Georgia. Photo: Eana Korbezashvili/Civil.ge Georgia debates teaching religion at school The ways of the lord are impenetrable. Rather than spur the government into action to prevent bullying in schools, the fate of two underage schoolboys, stabbed to death by their peers in downtown Tbilisi in December 2017, brought …

Read More »

From White Noise to Public Voice

On 25 January many Georgians are expected to hit the streets in protest for 8 years prison sentence handed down by the Georgian court to Giorgi Giorganashvili for the possession 0.375 grams of Burprenorphene (Subutex), an opiate. Giorganashvili claims the drugs were planted to exert pressure. The protest will be …

Read More »

Misha and the oligarchs

Grab from video footage showing Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko (left) granting Ukrainian citizenship to Georgia’s former President Mikheil Saakashvili (right) after announcing his appointment as governor of Odessa region in southwestern Ukraine. May 29, 2015. People are speaking a lot – perhaps too much – about Mikheil Saakashvili these days, whether …

Read More »

Georgia’s Zig-Zag Progress

Thomas de Waal. Photo: Larissa Wilson  Civil Georgia interviewed Thomas de Waal, Senior Fellow at Carnegie Europe, Brussels-based think tank on European foreign policy analysis. In your mind what are the chances for the Georgian democracy to develop further in the coming years?  I should make a few general observations about …

Read More »

Labour rights back on activist radar

Over 1,000 workers were killed or injured in occupational accidents in Georgia from 2011–2016, according to data compiled by the Applied Research Company, a consultancy. Almost every month, yet another worker plunges to his death from Tbilisi’s shockingly unprotected highrise construction sites or a story of worker humiliation or exploitation …

Read More »

Georgia Youths Take to the Streets

  Students lead the way In March 2016 Georgia’s oldest and largest university, Tbilisi State University (TSU) was shaken by a week-long student protest which grabbed national headlines. Sparked by alleged mismanagement of university  funds by the officially sanctioned Students’ Union, their demands soon encompassed fundamental reform of the higher …

Read More »

The Race for the Fertile Crescent

Events of historic consequence are occurring in Syria’s eastern desert and the Euphrates valley. Out of the countless events of the Syrian war so far, the present moment may be the most important one in deciding the near geopolitical future of the Fertile Crescent. Daesh—the so-called Islamic State—is falling. Chances are, it will remain …

Read More »

Georgia-Russia: Getting Security Right

Patrol cars of the European Union Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM). Photo: EUMM This past spring, the observers of largely anemic diplomatic talks in Geneva were exited to hear the reluctant confirmation by the Georgian foreign ministry of the “minor progress” regarding the non-use-of-force (NUF) agreement. This followed on Russian …

Read More »

Europe – Handle with Care

Georgia`s diplomatic spat with EU Special Representative (EUSR) Herbert Salber last week was as bad-tempered as it was unnecessary. Worse, the confidence-wrecking outburst makes the real differences between Georgia and the EU on breakaway regions even more difficult to address. Ambassador Salber represents the EU in Geneva International Discussions (GID), …

Read More »

Russia lays groundwork for South Ossetia Annexation

On March 28, the UN Security Council held a closed door discussion on developments in Georgia at Ukraine’s request. Speaking at his press briefing after the Security Council meeting, Ukraine’s Permanent Representative to the UN Volodymyr Yelchenko said one of the matters of concern was “the attempts of annexation and …

Read More »

Kokoity vs. Tibilov: an irrelevant standoff

In December 2016, the South Ossetian political scene was rocked by the sudden announcement of ex-president Eduard Kokoity (2006–2011) that he was planning to take part in the presidential elections, which are scheduled for 9 April. On 4 March, the Central Electoral Commission (CEC) of South Ossetia refused to register …

Read More »

Making do with the crew

By Hans Gutbrod Turnout decided the election. More so than usual this parliamentary election was decided by who came to vote. Little more than 25% of the population has given the Georgian Dream a massive majority in the parliament. A ruling party that has not collapsed on itself will typically …

Read More »

Name the culprit!

 US is Targeted by the Russian Active Measures Russia is trying to influence the outcome of the American presidential election, but also to damage its very legitimacy in the eyes of the voters. The US is right to respond by naming the culprit. American politicians and political organizations are being …

Read More »

Yes, he may

Trump’s election can change the world a heartbeat Early summer 1914 was tranquil, with international instability of the previous several years seemingly wearing down. When people opened newspapers and read that Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria had been murdered in Sarajevo on 28 June, few granted exceptional significance to that …

Read More »

Georgia: the Populist Break-in

As the West continues to struggle with the consequences of financial and humanitarian crises, European liberal democracies have come under heavy pressure from insurgent political parties. These parties are newer, smaller and considerably more radical than their traditional counterparts. Their approval rates are growing rapidly as popular resentment towards established …

Read More »

GD Secures Majority in Parliament as 12 MPs Join Ruling Coalition

Distribution of seats in Georgia’s 150-seat Parliament. GD won’t be able to pass a constitutional amendment, requiring support of at least 113 votes, without the support of MPs from UNM parliamentary minority group. Withdrawal of Irakli Alasania’s Free Democrats (FD) party from the Georgian Dream (GD) ruling coalition has affected …

Read More »

Alasania’s Free Democrats Quit GD Coalition

Irakli Alasania, ex-defense minister and leader of the Free Democrats, said on November 5 that his party quit the Georgian Dream ruling coalition. Alasania made the announcement, which did not come as a surprise following his dismissal from defense minister’s post by PM Irakli Garibashvili a day earlier, after his …

Read More »