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Georgia

Georgia

Georgia is a sovereign state in the South Caucasus region. Its form of government is that of a presidential republic. Georgia gained independence from the Soviet Union on 9 April 1991. Its current Constitution was adopted on 17 October 1995.

Territorially, Georgia is divided into 9 regions, 9 cities and 2 autonomous republics. The territorial state structure of Georgia is determined by the Constitutional Law. In accordance with Article 3 of the Constitution, the central government has exclusive competence in a number of areas, including the following: (a) legislation on Georgian citizenship, human rights and freedoms, migration, status of aliens; (b) the status, boundary regime and defense of the state frontiers; (c) state defense and national security; (d) the issues of war and peace, the determination of a legal regime of the state of emergency and the martial law and their introduction; (e) foreign policy and international relations; (f) foreign trade, customs and tariff regimes; (g) state finances and state loan; issuing money; legislation on banking, credit, insurance and taxes; (h) unified energy system and communications; (i) criminal, civil, administrative and labor legislation; (k)criminal police and investigation; and a number of others.

Executive branch. The Chief of State of Georgia is the President, who is elected by popular vote for a five-year term. The President is also head of government for the power ministries, i.e. state security (includes interior) and defense. The Prime Minister is head of government for the remaining government ministries.

Legislative branch. The legislative branch is represented by the unicameral Parliament or Umaghiesi Sabcho (235 seats - 150 elected by party lists). Its members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms. Article 48 of the Constitution provides that "[t]he Parliament of Georgia shall be the supreme representative body of the country, which shall exercise legislative power, determine the principle directions of domestic and foreign policy, exercise control over the activity of the Government within the framework determined by the Constitution and discharge other powers."

Article 60 of the Constitution stipulates the public nature of the parliamentary sessions, meanwhile allowing to declare a particular session or a part thereof closed by a decision of the majority of MPs. The Constitution also provides that "the minutes of the Parliament, except for secret matters, shall be published in the official gazette of the Parliament."

Judicial branch. The judicial branch is represented by the Supreme Court (judges elected by the Supreme Council on the president's recommendation); Constitutional Court; first and second instance courts. The establishment of emergency or special courts in expressly prohibited by the Constitution (Art. 83). Courts martial are permitted at war and exclusively within the system of the courts of general jurisdiction.

A petition to the Constitutional Court on the constitutionality of the an act can be lodged by a citizen, if the act violates human rights as proclaimed by Chapter 2 of the Constitution. The Constitutional Court is entitled to decide on the constitutionality of laws, presidential decrees, acts of the supreme bodies of the autonomous entities, the creation and the activity of political parties, and elections and referenda.

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Georgia is:

  • OSCE Participating State since 24 March 1992
  • Member State of the United Nations since 31 July 1992
  • Member State of the Council of Europe since 27 April 1999
 

Status of Ratification of the Main International Human Rights Treaties, Conventions and other instruments

UN Convention against Corruption (2003)04 November 2008
CoE Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (2008)01 February 2008
UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (2003)05 September 2006
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Legal Reviews

Joint Opinion on Amendments to the Election Code of Georgia (2016)

Date : 14 March 2016 English [0.19 MB]

Joint Opinion on the Draft Amendments to the Law on the Prosecutor's Office of Georgia

Date : 04 November 2015 English [0.49 MB]

Preliminary Joint Opinion on the Draft Amendments to the Law on the Prosecutor's Office of Georgia

Date : 07 July 2015 English [0.51 MB]
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Parliament

Constitutional Court