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CrisisWatch Georgia

Unchanged Situation

During 45th round of Geneva International Discussions 9-10 Oct, launched in 2008 as main negotiation forum for Georgian conflicts, UN, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), EU co-chairs and U.S. and Georgian representatives urged all participants to resume Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) meetings (aimed at defusing tensions along boundary line) after participants from South Ossetia walked out of meeting in Sept. Participants from Moscow, Abkhazia and South Ossetia expressed support for joint steps to restart IPRM meetings. Co-chairs acknowledged achievements of discussions over last ten years, emphasising however that “core issues remain to be resolved”, including adoption of a joint statement on non-use of force and situation of IDPs and refugees. In presidential elections 28 Oct, no candidate received more than 50% required to avoid runoff; second round scheduled early Dec between two candidates: independent Salome Zourabishvili, supported by ruling Georgian Dream party, who won 39% of votes in first round, and Grigol Vashadze from opposition United National Movement-led coalition, with some 38%. OSCE observers concluded voters had genuine choice despite an unlevel playing field, and voting generally orderly and transparent.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

13 Jun 2018
The Georgian government has been in crisis for quite a long time. Mr. Ivanishvili’s comeback and popular protests are just symptoms of this process. The New York Times

Olesya Vartanyan

Analyst, Eastern Neighbourhood
12 Mar 2018
Over the last three years, we have been seeing a serious decline in the situation in the districts [of South Ossetia] mainly populated by ethnic Georgians. Al Jazeera

Olesya Vartanyan

Analyst, Eastern Neighbourhood
5 Feb 2018
There was a social media campaign two years ago [in Abkhazia] encouraging people to boycott the funerals of anyone who died after seeking medical care in Tbilisi. EurasiaNet

Olesya Vartanyan

Analyst, Eastern Neighbourhood

Latest Updates

Ukraine Flare-Up Lays Bare Fears in Europe’s East

Renewed fighting in eastern Ukraine is quickly turning into a litmus test of Russia’s intentions in backing Ukrainian separatist rebels, and the real willingness of the West, in particular the United States, to support Kyiv. Fears over Washington’s wavering may also cause positions to harden in the protracted conflicts in Europe’s East, most immediately in Georgia. 

Georgia: Making Cohabitation Work

Whether the smooth transfer of power Georgia achieved after October’s bitter election sets a standard for democracy in its region depends on whether the new government can strengthen the independence and accountability of state institutions in what remains a fragile, even potentially explosive political climate.

Georgia's Constitutional Changes

Georgia is in the midst of transitioning from a presidential to a mixed parliamantary system, in which much power will lie with the office of the Prime Minister. Elections later this year will determine whether current President Mikheil Saakashvili's party, United National Movement, will retain control of government. Medea Turashvili, Caucasus analyst for the International Crisis Group, discusses what implications this might have on Georgia's domestic and foreign policy.