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Reform of the Security Service in Georgia

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Number Of Pages:  108

Publication Year:  2018



In the framework of the MIA reforms in 2015, the State Security Agency separated from the MIA and established itself as a separate institution. The separation of the police and security agencies was an important institutional move towards removing the concentration of excess power within the agency.

However, it was clear at that stage that the separation itself would not be sufficient to establish a balanced, accountable and democratic control mechanisms over the security sector. The newly-established agency, as a result of the 2015 reforms, was given a number of problematic powers. The current law gives a broad mandate to the agency, which includes fighting against transnational organized crime and prevention, identification and eradication of corruption. Moreover, the State Security Agency also has powers similar to that of law enforcement agencies, such as crime investigation and arrest.

A broad mandate and law enforcement powers, coupled with the absence of strong guarantees of oversight and lack of experience, creates a foundation for excess power and unchecked authority within the State Security Agency. This damages the human rights situation and system of democratic governance in the country. These very risks associated with the security sector are the cause of concern amongst international and local actors who systematically stress about the necessity of democratic governance and oversight in the State Security Service.

This report is the first comprehensive document that assesses the institutional and legislative environment of the State Security Service in the aftermath of the 2015 reforms. The report also analyzes data on the activities of the last years of the State Security Service.

The aim of the report is to deliver a critical analysis of the institutional independence, mandate, oversight and accountability, as well as the quality of transparency, of the State Security Agency. Taking best practice, the legislative framework and issues related to the implementation of the law into account, the research also aims to single our challenges and recommendations based on the findings, as well to support subsequent

reforms within the security sector. The research project team would like to thank the Parliament of Georgia and the State Security Agency for collaborating in the research and providing us with public information. We would also like to thank the research and non-governmental organizations, as well as experts, for sharing their experience with us. A particular extension of gratitude goes to the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) for their contribution to the research on international best practice.

See the full text of the research here⇓


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