Obstruction of journalists and violence against them once again came to the fore during the latest parliamentary elections in Armenia on 2 April.
Every Easter, people in Shukhuti, a small village in Guria, western Georgia, clash in the centre of the village over a heavy, 16–17 kg ball. This tradition, a kind of game of honor, is called Leloburti. Shukhuti is divided into two parts — Zemo (upper) and Kvemo (lower) Shukhuti — both of which field teams which clash every year.
Georgia’s government is planning sweeping changes to the country’s constitution. According to their proposals the amendments would change the way the president is elected and deprive him of certain powers, define marriage as a ‘union between a man and a woman’, abolish single-member voting constituencies, and ‘guarantee the social rights of its citizens’. [Read more…]
The situation on Armenia’s labour market is dire and it’s women who are affected the most. Gayane Ghambaryan, who has worked most of her life doing ‘man’s work’, tells of her struggle as her family’s sole breadwinner.
Chechnya, like many other modern-day republics of the Russian Federation, has experienced desolation of highland villages and an outflow of people, mostly young people, to the cities in the plains. People commonly say that they leave their ancestral villages in search of a ‘better life’. In fact, the reality often falls short of the migrants’ expectations, because even the largest city with its shiny skyscrapers often can’t give them what they’re looking for.
A large number of Indian students come to Georgia every year to study at Tbilisi State Medical University. OC Media talked to a number of them about why they come and their lives in Georgia, including the discrimination they face. [Read more…]
The high number of fatal occupational accidents in Georgia shows how dysfunctional labour inspection in the country is, as it fails to address alleged violations of safety rules on the labour market, non government organisations claim. While private companies rely on the ‘invisible hand’ and hope that the ‘market will regulate itself’, rights’ groups claim that workplace inspections need reform, which could help in preventing fatal accidents and improving workers’ conditions. [Read more…]
Farmers from southern Georgia’s historic Meskheti region are struggling to plant crops this spring. Meskhetian farmers complain of increased prices on fuel and equipment and say that this year they will plant a much smaller area than last year. [Read more…]
Georgia’s billionaire ex prime minister Bidzina Ivanishvili has been ripping up ancient and rare trees from across the country and transporting them to his private arboretum in Ureki. While the government claims it is for their own protection, activists continue to challenge the move. [Read more…]
Lezgins are one of five major ethnic groups living within Azerbaijan. The population of Lezgins makes up approximately 2% of the whole population of Azerbaijan. Their religion is Islam, and their language is Lezgi. Historically, Lezgins have inhabited the beautiful Caucasus Mountains between the Black and Caspian Seas. Part of the ethnic group is living in Dagestan, Russian Federation and another is beyond the border with Russia in the north-eastern part of Azerbaijan; Qusar, Quba and Khachmaz. However, the western part of Azerbaijan in Zaqatala and Balakan regions are also populated with many ethnic minorities including Lezgins. The UNHCR states that Lezgins make up 40% of the population of the Qusar and Khachmaz regions and that Greater Baku is 1.8% Lezgin. [Read more…]