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Peace politics – In search of new approaches and perspectives


Peacebuilding requires a sustainable and coherent policy based on a critical assessment of existing experience and history and a political consensus on new approaches and strategies pertaining to peace policy. Interest in the idea and policy of peacebuilding in Georgia is declining, and these issues are weakly represented on the political agenda.[1] The current peace policy of the central government is based on the engagement strategy developed in 2010, which can no longer respond to the changing political reality in the region. Although the human rights and humanitarian discourse has intensified in recent years, relying on ideas to strengthen engagement (including the development of a "Step for a Better Future" program in 2018), it has not substantially improved peace policy and the existing situation. Over the years, the social and legal situation of people living in and around conflict regions and humanitarian crises are worsened.

The fact that in 2021 the Government of Georgia started the process of reviewing the policy of engagement and de-occupation should be positively assessed. However, work on new/updated strategy papers is not yet complete, and the outcomes, in that regard, cannot be evaluated. Moreover, CSOs have not yet been provided with a document assessing the implementation of the engagement strategy of previous years and a draft document of the government's vision on the changes planned in this document.   

The presented document aims to offer to the state several alternative perspectives and ideas in the process of developing a new strategy, which in our opinion, should become part of the updated strategy of engagement.  

In assessing the current situation and developing visions, the Social Justice Center relied on existing policy documents and research and recent observations and assessments of the organization on the legal and social status in and around the conflict regions. We received consultations on this document from our pre-selected experts[2] , and it was reviewed and approved by them before we shared the document with government agencies. The Social Justice Center expresses gratitude to them for sharing their experience and knowledge.

The document was prepared within the framework of the project "Positive Transformation of Peace Policy through Research and Advocacy" supported by the Tbilisi Office of the Heinrich Boell Foundation. The views expressed in this review are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Heinrich Boell Foundation Tbilisi office.


Footnote and Bibliography

[1] Illusory Georgian policy of reconciliation and confidence building. See interviews with experts: https://socialjustice.org.ge/ka/products/sherigebisa-da-ndobis-aghdgenis-mochvenebiti-kartuli-politika; See also Conflict regions and human rights in the pre-election visions of the parties - 2020, https://socialjustice.org.ge/ka/products/konfliktis-regionebi-da-adamianis-uflebebi-partiebis-tsinasaarchevno-khedvebshi-2020

[2] Paata Zakareishvili - Conflictologist, former State Minister for Reconciliation and Civic Equality; Natia Chankvetadze - Peace and Conflict Researcher; Malkhaz Saldadze - political scientist; Mikheil Mirziashvili - Chairman of the Center of Development and Democracy.

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