Salome Zurabishvili has been elected the 5th president of Georgia in 28 November’s presidential runoff, winning 60% of votes according to preliminary results. Her win is historic, given that she is the first woman to run and succeed in the marathon for the presidential seat. Constantly emphasising her European origins, she has promised to help Georgia integrate into NATO and the EU and as she likes to say, ‘bring Georgian society together’.
The European Parliament has expressed concerns over high-level corruption, human rights protection, labour safety, judicial independence, and more in Georgia in a report on the implementation of the country’s EU Association Agreement. Despite criticisms, the report’s summary said overall assessment of the implementation process was positive. [Read more…]
In the face of abuse and threats over wearing a rainbow armband at a match, Georgia’s football captain, Guram Kashia, has received an unprecedented outpouring of support. Regardless of how much this support means for the queer community, we need to ask whether it is really for them, given that Kashia’s most prominent supporters have avoided mentioning queer people entirely. [Read more…]
Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili has come under fire from civil society groups as well as ruling party and opposition MPs for refusing to nominate a candidate to head the Supreme Court. Some critics warned the move could allow a ‘dominant group of judges’ on Georgia’s High Council of Justice to strengthen their grip over the judiciary. [Read more…]
Despite a rise in the awareness of women’s rights in Georgia, feminist activists have found themselves up against a deeply-rooted culture that hinders further progress. Early marriages, a lack of recognition of the need for more female decision-makers, and impassivity towards women’s issues in the male-dominated parliament create a compounding, socially-driven force that stands on the way of gender equality.
The latest Eastern Partnership summit offered little to Georgia, raising questions as to what to do next. While officials in Brussels mostly advise patience, discussion in Georgia abound on the best way to attract the EU’s attention further. [Read more…]
After a dispute broke out between Christians and Muslims over the ruins of a building in the village of Mokhe, in southwest Georgia’s Adigeni Municipality, the government stepped in to resolve the situation by pledging to build a new mosque.
Georgia, a country where every third prisoner is serving time for drugs, may be about to transform its strict drug policy into a far more liberal system. Activists and reformers are hoping that new legislation could change Georgia’s system away from what they call ‘the war against the people’. [Read more…]
Khatia Kardava, 28, IDP Women Association — Consent
‘I was three years old when the war began. I hardly remember anything, but I don’t really like when people ask me about it, because it’s painful. As time passes the memories become blurry — I don’t really know what are actual memories and what are expressions from photos and videos.’ [Read more…]
Despite reports of violence and discrimination against queer people often hitting the news, for Wagdy (Egypt), Riri (Azerbaijan), and Misha (Nigeria), Georgia represents a safe place where they can finally be themselves. While some find a new life in Georgia free from fear, the country’s opaque asylum procedures threaten to send some of them back, their presence deemed ‘contradictory to the interests of the country’.