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Georgia in the West: A Policy Road Map to Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic Future

On October 13, the Atlantic Council Task Force on Georgia, co-chaired by Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Lindsey Graham, released a major new report on Georgia at an event held on Capitol Hill, arguing for intensified domestic reform and a new sense of common purpose and clarity from the United States and Europe to work toward a democratic Georgia embedded in the institutions of the West.

Georgia faces critical tests at home–parliamentary elections in 2012 and a presidential contest in 2013—and mounting external pressure as Russia occupies Abkhazia and South Ossetia and seeks to destabilize Georgia. Against this background, Georgia must demonstrate its commitment to further its democracy, and the United States and Europe must redouble their efforts to support Georgia, including at the May 2012 Chicago NATO summit. The task force report, Georgia in the West: A Policy Road Map to Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic Future, lays out a series of recommendations to support those ends.

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Living in Limbo – Rights of Ethnic Georgians Returnees to the Gali District of Abkhazia

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Almost 18 years after a cease-fire ended the Georgian-Abkhaz war, the conflict over the breakaway region of Abkhazia remains as far from a political resolution as ever, leaving in limbo the lives of more than 200,000 people, mostly ethnic Georgians displaced by the conflict. The only area of Abkhazia where the de facto authorities in the breakaway region have allowed returns of displaced persons is the southernmost district of Gali, where ethnic Georgians constituted 96 percent of the pre- conflict population. About 47,000 displaced people have returned to their homes in Gali district. But the Abkhaz authorities have erected barriers to their enjoyment of a range of civil and political rights.

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2011: Failed States Index – Georgia Review

The strength of the Failed States Index is its ability to distill millions of pieces of information into a form that is relevant as well as easily digestible and informative. Daily, the Fund for Peace collects thousands of reports and information from around the world, detailing the existing social, economic and political pressures faced by each of the 177 countries that we analyze.

The Fund for Peace’s software performs content analysis on this collected information. Through sophisticated search parameters and algorithms, the CAST software separates the relevant data from the irrelevant. Guided by 12 primary social, economic and political indicators (each split into an average of 14 sub-indicators), the CAST software analyzes the collected information using specialized search terms that flag relevant items. This analysis is then converted using an algorithm into a score representing the significance of each of the various pressures for a given country.

Georgian Score: 47 from 177 country, in 2010 – 37 (Then lower in the list, the better)

Georgia is the most improved nation, reaping the benefits of new accountability and transparency measures in the security sector and a government crackdown on corruption. A reduced threat of conflict with neighboring Russia further improved scores.

Score Rank Different
Mounting Demograpic Pressures 5.80 112 -0.40
Massive Movement of Refugees or Internally-Displaced Persons 7.50 32 -0.80
Vengeance-Seeking Group Grievance 8.00 31 -0.50
Chronic and Sustained Human Flight 5.50 104 -0.50
Uneven Economic Development 6.90 86 -0.60
Poverty and Sharp or Severe Economic Decline 6.00 84 0.00
Legitimacy of the State 8.40 35 -0.60
Progressive Deterioration of Public Services 6.00 83 -0.30
Violation of Human Rights and Rule of Law 6.90 66 -0.60
Security Apparatus 7.90 32 0.00
Rise of Factionalized Elites 8.95 18 0.05
Intervention of External Actors 8.50 22 -1.00
Total 86.35 47 -5.45

Each Indicator is rated on a 1 to 10 scale with 1 (low) being the most stable and 10 (high) being the most at-risk of collapse and violence. Think of it as trying to bring down a fever, with high being dangerous and low being acceptable.