Following Unrest, Georgia Looks Ahead to Crucial Elections Next Year

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Public unrest in Tbilisi earlier this month has disturbed the friends of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili. Since Saakashvili’s ascent to power during the peaceful Rose Revolution in November 2003, Western nations have touted his government as a beacon of democracy in the South Caucasus. Indeed, over the last four years, Saakashvili’s cabinet has reined in corruption, improved tax collection and reportedly increased tax revenue six-fold. Undemocratic Actions Yet, these breakthroughs notwithstanding, Saakashvili’s popularity is on decline. Public discontent with his governing practices erupted after the Sept. 27 arrest and alleged torture of the former defense minister, Irakli Okruashvili. Saakashsvili dismissed […]

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