Georgia’s parliamentary elections on October 31 will be held amid a war on its doorstep, a sharp spike in new coronavirus cases, and ramped-up interference from the Kremlin. The recent escalation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has challenged the fragile security situation in the South Caucasus. Meanwhile, a rising number of coronavirus infections will prevent international election observers from monitoring the election and may depress voter turnout.
On the bright side, Georgia is also set for what may be its most competitive elections to date, after the legislature passed electoral reforms in June aimed at curbing parliamentary supermajorities. Do all of these developments mean that Georgia is entering a new phase? What can observers expect to see next?
Thomas de Waal, senior fellow at Carnegie Europe; Nino Ghvinadze, non-resident fellow at the Eurasia Center; Laura Linderman, non-resident senior fellow at the Eurasia Center; and Dr. Lincoln Mitchell, adjunct research scholar at Columbia University, assess the challenges and opportunities for democracy in the wake of Georgia’s parliamentary elections. Melinda Haring, deputy director of the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center, moderates.
New Atlanticist Oct 27, 2020
Georgia’s parliamentary elections are surrounded by uncertainty
By Nino Ghvinadze and Laura Linderman
Amidst a global pandemic and the sudden escalation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between neighboring Armenia and Azerbaijan, Georgia is holding its first parliamentary elections since hard-fought electoral reforms were approved in June 2020 and several dramatic developments have increased uncertainty about the outcome.
New Atlanticist Jun 9, 2020
Russian cyberattack on Georgia shows why the US should pass the Georgia Support Act
By George Tsereteli
The US Senate could take a significant step toward helping its vulnerable ally by passing the Georgia Support Act and ensuring its provisions are met. The multitude of statements supporting Georgia and condemning the Russian attacks are, of course, a politically positive message for Georgia—but to think statements can change or deter the Kremlin’s behavior is beyond naïve. Concrete actions, such as the passage and signing of H.R.598 into law, would be a message of support backed with real weight.
The Eurasia Center’s mission is to enhance transatlantic cooperation in promoting policies that strengthen stability, democratic values, and prosperity in Eurasia, from Eastern Europe in the West to the Caucasus, Russia, and Central Asia in the East.