Georgia – A Country in the Caucasus
Georgia, an amazing past.
Georgia, an incredible future!
The recorded history of Georgia dates back more than 4,000 years. The culture of Georgia has evolved over the country's long history, providing it with strong literary tradition. The unique Georgian alphabet, which is among the fourteen existing ones in the world dates back to the 5 th century BC.
The Georgian Apostolic Autocephalous Orthodox Church is one of the world's most ancient Christian Churches, founded in the 1st century by the Apostle Andrew. In the first half of the 4 th century Christianity was adopted as the state religion. This has provided a strong sense of national identity that has helped to preserve Georgian distinctiveness despite repeated periods of foreign occupation and attempted assimilation.
Georgia has historically found itself on the margins of great empires all desiring to conquer its territory as desirable land for the great Asian empires in the course of centuries. Despite numerous invasions and wars Davit Aghmashenebeli (the Builder, 1089-1125), Georgia's greatest and most prominent king, managed to unite Georgia in XII century. The reign of Davit Aghmashenebeli and King Tamar (1184-1213) has passed into history as an epoch of state reconstruction, cultural efflorescence, social-economic resurgence and construction of churches and monasteries.
Hardly any other country except for Georgia has experienced such a great number of assaults and still been able to preserve intact so many of its characteristic. Numerous churches and fortifications bear witness to the country's desirability, resulting in a restless historic past.
The last conqueror, Russia, started annexation of Georgia in 1801. Georgia spent almost 200 years of its recent history being part of the Russian empire: first as Russia's province (guberniya), then as a Soviet republic. Independent for three years (1918-1921) following the Russian revolution, it was forcibly incorporated into the USSR. In 1991, the Supreme Council of the Republic of Georgia declared independence from the U.S.S.R. and in 1992 became the 179th member of the United Nations.
In 2003 an attempt by the government to manipulate legislative elections touched off widespread public uprising that led to the democratic Rose Revolution and resignation of President Eduard Shevardnadze. In 2004 Saakashvili was elected President of Georgia. Restoring Georgia's territorial integrity, reversing the effects of ethnic cleansing and returning refugees to their home places were the main principles of Saakashvili's pre-election campaign.
Saakashvili spearheaded many democratic reforms including wide-sweeping reforms in public service transparency, the elimination of bureaucratic corruption in state departments and police forces and have focused government spending on redevelopment of modern infrastructure and cutting-edge technologies that have set the country on a positive path of integration into modern economies and politics.
Today Georgia is known to be a country of low crime rates, increased wealth and well-being for it's citizens and a determination to find its rightful place in the political and commercial arena of the rest of the progressive world.
After serving 2 terms in office the country saw a peaceful and successful transition of government to the newly elect president in 2013, Giorgi Margvelashvili, who is determined to continue to build on positive international relationships, reconciliation efforts with Russia, and continued economical growth.
Today Georgia is a stable presidential democracy.
Geographic coordinates: 42 00 N, 43 30 E
Map references: Europe
69,700 sq km
Land boundaries: total: 1,461 km
border countries: Armenia 164 km, Azerbaijan 322 km, Russia 723 km, Turkey 252 km
Coastline: 310 km
Climate: warm and pleasant; Mediterranean-like on Black Sea coast
Terrain: largely mountainous with Great Caucasus Mountains in the north and Lesser Caucasus Mountains in the south; Kolkhida Lowland opens to the Black Sea in the west; Mtkvari River Basin in the east; good soils in river valley flood plains, foothills of Kolkhida Lowland
lowest point: Black
Sea 0 m
highest point: Mountain Shkhara 5,201 m
Natural resources: forests, hydropower, manganese deposits, iron ore, copper, minor coal and oil deposits; coastal climate and soils allow for important tea and citrus growth.
Geography: strategically located east of the Black Sea; Georgia controls much of the Caucasus Mountains and the routes through them.
Population: 4,677,401 (July 2005 est.)
0-14 years: 18%
(male 444,779/female 398,162)
15-64 years: 65.9% (male 1,480,557/female 1,603,743)
65 years and over: 16% (male 300,859/female 449,301) (2005 est.)
- male: 34.93 years
-female: 39.7 years (2005 est.)
Ethnic groups: Georgian 83.8%, Azeri 6.5%, Armenian 5.7%, Russian 1.5%, other 2.5% (2002 census)
Religions: Orthodox Christian 83.9%, Armenian-Gregorian 3.9%, Catholic 0.8%, Muslim 9.9%, other 0.8%, none 0.7% (2002 census)
Georgian 71% (official), Russian 9%, Armenian 7%, Azeri
6%, other 7%
note: Abkhaz is the official language in Abkhazia
Country name: Georgia
Administrative divisions: 9 regions, 9 cities, and 2 autonomous republics
Guria, Imereti, Kakheti, Kvemo Kartli,
Mtskheta-Mtianeti, Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti, Samegrelo and
Zemo Svaneti, Samtskhe-Javakheti, Shida Kartli
Autonomous Republics: Autonomous Republic of Abkhazia (Sokhumi), Autonomous Republic of Ajaria (Batumi)
Independence: 9 April 1991 (from Soviet Union)
Constitution: Adopted 24 August 1995
Legal system: Based on civil law system
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: Chief of State: President Giorgi Margvelashvili (since November 2013); Note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government for the power ministries: state security (includes interior) and defense
Elections: President elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 4 January 2004 (next to be held in 2009)
Legislative branch: The Parliament of Georgia is the supreme representative body of the country. The Parliament consist of 150 members of the Parliament elected by a proportional system and 85 members elected by a majority system for a term of four years on the basis of universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot.
Judicial branch: Supreme Court (judges elected by the Supreme Council on the president's recommendation); Constitutional Court; first and second instance courts
Airports: 30 (2004 est.)
total: 1,612 km (1,612 km electrified)
broad gauge: 1,575 km 1.520-m gauge (1,575 electrified)
narrow gauge: 37 km 0.912-m gauge (37 electrified) (2004)
Ports and terminals: Batumi, Poti