by Eka Janashia (the 08/07/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
On June 28, the Georgian state statistics office (Geostat) announced a 0 percent growth of the country’s real GDP in May. The economic slowdown started in 2012 Q4, accounting for a 2.9 percent increase in January, 2.1 percent in February and 0.2 percent in March of 2013.
by Mamuka Tsereteli (the 08/07/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is the only reliable security umbrella for the Georgian state. Georgia made the political decision to join NATO in 2002. At the Bucharest Summit in 2008 NATO promised Georgia membership, and since 2011 allies refer to Georgia as an aspirant partner country. But Russia opposes Georgia’s NATO membership and some Western European countries see Georgia’s membership as a source of potential conflict with Russia. The alliance needs to provide real mechanisms for membership to Georgia that could bring much needed stability to the entire Caucasus region.
by Eka Janashia (07/10/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
On July 1, the United National Movement (UNM) lost its majority in Tbilisi City Council (Sakrebulo) after Koki Ionatamishvili, a close aide to Tbilisi mayor Gigi Ugulava and the chairman of the party’s faction in the council, left the UNM.
by Ariela Shapiro (07/10/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
On May 27, Russian border troops in South Ossetia started building barbed wire fences beyond the occupation line and into undisputed Georgian territory. These incursions, termed “borderization operations” by the Russian administration, are an estimated 25 kilometers in length and extend between 50-300 meters beyond the occupation line. While the U.S. State Department and European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM) all promptly reacted by describing the fence building as “unacceptable” and “concerning,” neither were able to prevent or cease the construction. These actions demonstrate how Russia views the post-2008 “new geopolitical realities” and that Putin intends to dictate the terms and parameters of any “normalizing” of relations with Georgia.
The Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst is a biweekly publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program, a Joint Transatlantic Research and Policy Center affiliated with the American Foreign Policy Council, Washington DC., and the Institute for Security and Development Policy, Stockholm. For 15 years, the Analyst has brought cutting edge analysis of the region geared toward a practitioner audience.