10 April 2022 in Dossier The Challenges of the European Union, Geopolitics


There is a fragment of Asia that absolutely wants to enter the European Union. It is Georgia, one of the most culturally important countries in the history and prehistory of the world, one of the countries crushed for decades under the heel of the Soviet Union. It is a people full of contradictions, with a corrupt and violent political power, and a passionate and peaceful population that, the only time it has made a revolution, instead of weapons carried a rose in its hand. One rose each, millions of roses, to win freedom – and now to show solidarity with the Ukrainian people and ask the rulers to defend the country in the only way possible: by joining the European Union as soon as possible.

Few places in the world are as fascinating as this country: green pastures and breathtaking mountains, and the miracle of the Tusheti National Park on the slopes of the Caucasus… then wonderful historical testimonies everywhere: churches and ancient fortresses, cities full of history and life, cheerful and extroverted people, lovers of music and good food, a gentle climate, a people who consider the guest as “a gift from God”. As large as Ireland, less than 4 million people live there, more than a million in the capital Tbilisi.

It is nestled between the Black Sea to the west and the Caspian Sea to the east, and between two mountain ranges, one reaching 5600 metres in the Great Caucasus – the natural border with Russia – and sheltering not only from the eternal enemy, but also from the icy currents of Siberia; the other, the Little Caucasus, along the southern border with Turkey, Armenia and Azerbaijan, is in turn a natural barrier to the heat coming from the Arab countries. These valleys seem to have been the birthplace of the world’s first wine production, 6000 years before the birth of Christ[1], which is still an important source of income today[2]. But the vibrant colours of the valleys and cities clash with a bleak social and economic reality.

The fall of the Soviet Union brought with it freedom, but also economic collapse. Although the government has succeeded in increasing the gross domestic product, no matter what the global economic situation, by an average of 5% per year up to the present day[3], this has not translated into benefits for the domestic market: 20% unemployment rate[4], average income of only $350 per month[5]. Agriculture employs more than 50% of the workforce[6], and education has never reached a level that would allow a quantum leap. 21.3% of the population lives below the poverty line[7], 14.5% of the population (151,000 families) live on a meagre state subsidy[8].

The Covid epidemic19 (Georgia has one of the worst infection rates in the world[9]) has had an impact on GDP, reducing it by 6.8%, although recently Irakli Garibashvili seems to be on the right track, closing 2021 with an increase of 10.6%[10]. But the conflict in Ukraine is reshuffling the cards: Russia and Ukraine are the main trade partners, and the Chairman of the Budget and Finance Commission, Irakli Kovzanadze, is very pessimistic about the 6% growth target, predicting an annual loss of over a billion dollars for the current year[11].

A wonderful story of art and engineering

The rock-cut city of Uplistsikhe, the oldest cave city in the world[12]

A crossroads of cultures, Georgia has been conquered a thousand times over the centuries, and a thousand times it has been liberated: Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs, Cazars, Mongols, Persians, Turks, all have left their mark and made this land completely original. The language and their distinctive writing originated during the reign of Kartli Parnavaz, i.e. in the 3rd-4th centuries BC, although the earliest examples of Georgian literature that have survived to the present day date from the 4th century AD, when Georgians converted to Christianity: Iakob Tsurtaveli, Shota Rustaveli, Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani, Ilia Chavchavadze are cornerstones that have left an indelible mark, until more recent times, with other extraordinary authors such as Galaktion Tabidze, Alexandre Kazbegi, Akaki Tsereteli and Nodar Dumbadze.

Architecture is one of the most extraordinary features of this land: each province has its own unique characteristics and peculiarities: from the stone and slate tower-houses of Svaneti, a UNESCO World Heritage Site[13], to the historic quarters of Tbilisi, listed on the World Monuments Watch of 1998, 2000 and 2002 and a UNESCO World Heritage Site[14], while the Zemo Kala quarter has been chosen as a World Heritage Site by the World Bank[15]. There is also a modern city of glass and steel, sparkling in the panorama from the hills – and the cathedrals and monasteries of Mtskheta, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site[16]. In addition, there are the frescoes in the Gelati and Svetitskhivelii Cathedrals, the David Gareji Monastery, Ateni Sioni, Bethany… an almost endless list of beauties.

A view of Bethlehem Street in Tbilisi[17]

But UNESCO’s first decision was to protect polyphonic singing, “intangible heritage of humanity”, the oldest of those that have come down to us, and already famous in 300 A.D., from China to Rome[18]. A song accompanied by dances that were originally linked to collective events, such as war, grape harvests and courtship. A priceless treasure of culture and national pride that not even the long years of Soviet domination were able to overwhelm.

Independence, roses and the drifts of power

In 2003, Ševardnadze’s bad leadership resulted in a peaceful revolution, with opponents armed only with roses bursting into parliament. Ševardnadze resigned the next day[19]

In 1921 Georgia is conquered by Soviet troops, led by Josip Stalin, who ironically is Georgian: Bolshevik militias impose the Transcaucasian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic which, in 1936, is renamed the Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic – a grim period of oppression and social, economic and cultural stagnation, until the declaration of independence in 1991, which on the one hand reawakened Georgian pride, but on the other were the beginning of dangerous inter-ethnic clashes, as the USSR displaced tens of thousands of Russians in Georgia.

Former Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Ševardnadze, who succeeded Zviad Gamsakhurdia in 1992[20], was elected president in November 1995, with an unstable government born of complex compromises with the other national political forces, and tensions in the separatist regions of Abkhazia, Adjara and South Ossetia[21]. Forced to lead the country out of poverty, out of political imbalance, out of rampant corruption, out of the denial of civil rights, towards a longed-for democratisation, Sevardnadze became entangled in palace intrigues and, overwhelmed by accusations of nepotism, was forced to resign from the presidency[22], opening the era in which the party that had run the country since independence lost its most famous politicians and fell in electoral consensus[23].

Ševardnadze was re-elected on 2 November 2003, in a contest that was at the centre of accusations of irregularities[24]: on 22 November, while the president was giving the inaugural speech of the new legislature, the protests turned into a tide that occupied the squares and, following the leader of the opposition Mikheil Saakashvili, burst into parliament, armed only with roses, forcing the president to flee[25]. The next elections were held in January 2004, with a landslide victory for Saakashvili[26]. His first term in office was a success: he waged a relentless battle against the country’s entrenched corrupt elite, supported the free market, drastically reduced bureaucracy and achieved exciting results in terms of economic growth[27].

Re-elected in January 2008, his second term in office was not so lucky: Transparency International and other international NGOs accused him of protecting his party’s kleptocrats[28]. His consensus waned: his repressive and violent methods against the oppositions were contested[29], and his bad management of the South Ossetia crisis, which provoked the Russian invasion, sanctioned his political decline: an autocratic drift, more and more repressive, the use of the judiciary to fight political opponents, the use of violence against the squares, culminating with the TV broadcast of some videos showing rape and beatings of prisoners[30].

He lost the 2012 elections[31] to a coalition led by Bidzina Ivanishvili, an oligarch from Russia[32], who also won the 2016[33] and 2020[34] elections. Saakashvili, accused of pardoning police officers accused of murder, fled into exile in Ukraine, where he was elected Governor of Odessa[35]. In 2017, Saakashvili was expelled from his host country and his citizenship was revoked[36], but it was restored by the newly elected Zelensky[37] after he was sentenced in absentia by a Georgian court to six years in prison for abuse of power[38]. In October 2021, on his return to Georgia, he was immediately arrested[39].

Secessionist pressures and the 2008 invasion

8 August 2008, the Russians invade Georgia. It is the beginning of the first European war of the 21st century[40]

The clashes in Ossetia began even before the collapse of the Soviet Union: in November 1989, the first bullets flew in Tskhinvali, the capital of South Ossetia[41]. In September 1990, South Ossetia declared itself sovereign as a republic within the USSR, but a month later the Georgian government formally opposed autonomy, establishing an economic blockade that would last until June 1992[42]. Tensions soon turn into fierce fighting until, with the Sochi Agreement, signed by Boris Yeltsin and Eduard Ševardnadze[43], Ossetia is divided into areas controlled by Georgian troops and areas controlled by the rebels, who install the government in Tskhinvali[44].

All this happens while Gamsakhurdia, the first democratically elected President (3 January 1992)[45], is overthrown in Tbilisi in a coup d’état that causes at least 200 victims and ends with the President fleeing[46] and Abkhazia seceding – leading to a new war, which creates over 200,000 refugees[47], lasts two years[48] and ends with Abkhazia joining the Russian Federation[49]. In the meantime, new world balances are being redrawn: at the end of the 1990s, the European Union and NATO expand their influence in Central and Eastern Europe. Russia does not take kindly to the loss of this buffer zone between Moscow and the West – and when Tbilisi joins the US-led coalition in the Iraq war in 2003[50], the Kremlin begins to threaten actions of force.

The situation remains stable, albeit with strong tensions, until 2004, when Saakashvili promises to re-establish national sovereignty over South Ossetia and Abkhazia, which leads to guerrilla actions, obviously supported by Moscow: in August 2008 Saakashvili invades Ossetia, a few hours after he had promised South Ossetia “unlimited autonomy” and announced a ceasefire in the area[51]. This provoked the Russian armed intervention in support of the separatists, known as the ‘five-day war’[52].

On 10 August, Soviet bombs hit the civilian airport in Tbilisi[53]. Overwhelmed, Saakashvili is forced to accept a ceasefire, leaving most of South Ossetia in the hands of the Tskhinvali government: Russia recognises both Abkhazia and South Ossetia, increasing its influence over them[54]. The peace agreement between the Russians and the Georgians was signed on 12 August, with the mediation of the French President Nicolas Sarkozy in his role as President of the European Union[55]: all this cost 2000 dead and 100,000 refugees, who left behind piles of rubble[56].

In April 2009, Russia signed a five-year agreement to take formal control of its borders with Georgia, as well as those of Abkhazia[57]. Then it also began to exert pressure on Georgia by signing an “alliance and integration agreement” with South Ossetia, which stipulated the abolition of border checkpoints[58]. In July of the same year, the Moscow security forces moved the border fence[59], extending the fraction of Georgian territory under their control: the E60 motorway, the main road linking the Black Sea to Azerbaijan, is now just 500 metres from the border – and a segment of the Baku-Supsa gas pipeline operated by BP is also incorporated into the occupied territory[60].

21 April 2014. anti-Russian demonstration in front of the State Chancellery in Tbilisi[61]

Violations of the peace agreements continue, as Russia does not allow international observers into South Ossetia and Abkhazia[62]. The Western response is inadequate: Russia has been allowed to play the role of mediator and ‘peacekeeper’, thus effectively leaving the issue of Georgia’s territorial integrity in the hands of its worst enemy. A large part of the Georgian people feel the Russian presence as a constant and existential threat, which increases their desire to be part of the European Union and NATO. The Russian invasion of Ukraine amplifies the fear of imminent aggression. The Georgians know that they are potentially the next victims, along with other ‘buffer’ states such as Moldova…

The complex road to Europe

The path of diplomatic agreements between the European Union and Georgia began in 1992, soon after the recognition of independence. On 22 April 1996, a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement was signed in Luxembourg. The agreement came into force in 1999, and before the Council of Europe, Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania said, “I am Georgian, and therefore I am European[63]. On 27 April 1999, Georgia joined the Council of Europe[64], and a free trade agreement was signed in 2014[65]. Since 2017, Georgians no longer need a visa to travel to the European Union[66]. This generates a wave of asylum seekers to the Schengen area which, according to statistics from the Georgian Ministry of Affairs, reaches 220,000 in early 2018[67]. Since the declaration of independence in 1991, Georgia has already lost a third of its population[68].

While in other countries entry into the European Union divides minds, in Georgia there is practically unanimity in favour of Brussels. The results of the 2020 survey by Caucasus Research Resource Centers on behalf of Carnegie[69] Europe and the Levan Mikeladze Foundation for the joint Future of Georgia project reflect this: for 78% of Georgians “becoming European” is certainly a good thing, but their motivations are different[70]. In any case, in 2018, at the request of the European Commission, the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Facility will carry out an evaluation of the accession path, which is absolutely positive[71].

Despite this, the road to accession still seems long. On the table are the unresolved territorial issues with Abkhazia and South Ossetia[72], but also major social issues such as poverty, unemployment, low average income and political instability: the last internal crisis broke out on 31 October 2020, won by the governing party amidst accusations of fraud, street protests and the parliamentary boycott of several parties for long months[73]. Then there is the issue of human rights: accusations against police and officials for abuse of authority and violence; limits on media freedom; seriously unsafe conditions in the workplace; disproportionate drug policies, such as harsh imprisonment even for the possession of small amounts; and fierce discrimination against LGBT people, who are denied basic rights[74].

European observers, while praising and encouraging the progress made in various areas, urge the country to do much more. Georgia is therefore under special surveillance, for example by the International Criminal Court, which since 2016 has been investigating war crimes committed during the Russia-Georgia war of August 2008 in South Ossetia[75]. But despite promises, nothing seems to change[76], so that in August 2021 the European Union is denying a grant of 75 million euros because of the lack of implementation of judicial reforms[77].

The aggression against Ukraine has suddenly changed the scenario. In recent years, especially during the last government led by Irakli Garibashvili and the oligarch Bidzina Ivanishvili, EU membership has taken a back seat to a rapprochement with Russia, despite public opinion being openly opposed to it[78]. Garibashvili’s stance on the crisis in Ukraine is emblematic: he has decided not to take part in the sanctions against Russia, does not close the country’s airspace to Russian flights, and avoids expressing solidarity with the government in Kyiv[79].

Tbilisi, March 2022: An oceanic crowd of demonstrators in solidarity with the Ukrainians fills the squares and streets[80]

Worse: Garibashvili boycotted the parliamentary sessions intended to discuss the current crisis, refused to hold the meeting of the National Security Council called for by both the opposition and President Zourabishvili, who was worried about the military movements recorded along the borders[81], blocked a flight from Tbilisi to Ukraine with 60 volunteer fighters on board and obtained that Volodymyr Zelensky recalled his ambassador to Georgia, calling Georgia’s position towards Ukraine ‘immoral’[82].

Public opinion reacts vehemently: an impressive number of people take to the streets for days to show solidarity with the Ukrainian people. The impassioned reaction of the Georgians has its first effects: President Zourabishvili has taken a clear position in open contrast with the government, to the point of receiving a formal reproach for having gone ‘beyond her role’[83]. She appears courageously determined, even though she justifies Garibashvili with the fear of provoking reactions from Russia[84]. Yet the turning point came: on 2 March, Irakli Kobakhidze, president of the government party, announced his party’s decision to “immediately apply for EU membership”, bringing forward the application previously planned for 2024[85].

On 3 March, Georgia, together with Moldova, formally applied for EU membership[86]. Zelensky comments: ‘There are times when the citizens are not the government, but are better than the government’[87]. The Ukrainian crisis could represent a useful shock for a corrupt, inadequate and reactionary political class, light years away from the popular soul, increasingly projected towards the West. The situation is precarious: one must avoid angering Russia, but one must necessarily respond to the will of the people. The risk is that, with widespread anti-Russian sentiment, the choice of neutrality could represent a serious mistake, especially if seen in the long term. Turning back, as the Ukraine issue demonstrates, will no longer be possible; Europe, therefore, remains the only possible destination, even if Moscow will do everything in its power to hinder the process of integration towards the West.


[1] https://www.nationalgeographic.com/travel/article/sponsor-content-secret-birthplace-of-wine#:~:text=Georgia%20is%20generally%20considered%20the,it%20underground%20for%20the%20winter.

[2] https://georgianjournal.ge/business/37697-georgia-generates-record-high-250-mln-in-wine-exports.html

[3] https://www.worldbank.org/en/country/georgia/overview#1

[4] https://www.geostat.ge/en/modules/categories/683/Employment-Unemployment

[5] https://www.geostat.ge/en/modules/categories/683/Employment-Unemployment

[6] https://www.goasia.it/economia-polita-e-popolazione-in-georgia/

[7] https://agenda.ge/en/news/2021/1438

[8] https://agenda.ge/en/news/2021/973

[9] https://graphics.reuters.com/world-coronavirus-tracker-and-maps/countries-and-territories/georgia/

[10] https://www.intellinews.com/reports/georgia-country-report-mar22-march-2022-83737/

[11] https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/georgia-says-it-will-lose-over-1-billion-because-ukraine-2022-03-25/

[12] https://www.itinari.com/de/uplistsikhe-the-oldest-cave-town-in-georgia-krnw

[13] https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/709/

[14] https://www.wmf.org/project/tbilisi-historic-district#:~:text=Tbilisi%20Historic%20District%20was%20placed,World%20Bank%20Cultural%20Heritage%20Initiative.

[15] https://www.wmf.org/project/tbilisi-historic-district#:~:text=Tbilisi%20Historic%20District%20was%20placed,World%20Bank%20Cultural%20Heritage%20Initiative.

[16] https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/708/

[17] https://www.dreamstime.com/betlemi-street-tbilisi-city-center-georgia-image111950534

[18] https://ich.unesco.org/en/RL/georgian-polyphonic-singing-00008

[19] https://georgiageorgian.blogspot.com/2011/09/rose-revolution.html

[20] https://www.britannica.com/biography/Eduard-Shevardnadze

[21] https://www.brookings.edu/on-the-record/georgian-leader-brought-down-by-corruption-chances-of-success-for-new-leaders-seen-as-uncertain/

[22] https://www.brookings.edu/on-the-record/georgian-leader-brought-down-by-corruption-chances-of-success-for-new-leaders-seen-as-uncertain/

[23] https://en-academic.com/dic.nsf/enwiki/973429 ; https://www.refworld.org/docid/46a484f5c.html

[24] https://www.voanews.com/a/a-13-a-2003-11-20-36-georgian/297771.html

[25] https://www.brookings.edu/on-the-record/georgian-leader-brought-down-by-corruption-chances-of-success-for-new-leaders-seen-as-uncertain/

[26] https://www.voanews.com/a/a-13-a-2004-01-05-33-saakashvili/390747.html

[27] https://www.politico.eu/article/the-rise-and-fall-of-mikheil-saakashvili/

[28] https://www.politico.eu/article/the-rise-and-fall-of-mikheil-saakashvili/

[29] https://neweasterneurope.eu/2018/08/16/mikheil-saakashvilis-contribution-georgias-transition/

[30] https://old.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=25220

[31] https://neweasterneurope.eu/2018/08/16/mikheil-saakashvilis-contribution-georgias-transition/

[32] https://www.forbes.com/profile/bidzina-ivanishvili/?sh=50891f164598

[33] https://www.reuters.com/article/us-georgia-election-idUSKCN1272AT

[34] https://neweasterneurope.eu/2020/11/02/georgian-dream-wins-a-third-term-as-the-opposition-calls-for-a-boycott-of-parliament/

[35] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-32969052

[36] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-40738193

[37] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48437792

[38] https://www.rferl.org/a/saakashvili-convicted-of-abuse-of-power-sentenced-in-absentia/29327555.html

[39] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-58767420

[40] https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/ukrainealert/the-2008-russo-georgian-war-putins-green-light/

[41] https://evnreport.com/understanding-the-region/territorial-conflicts-in-the-caucasus/

[42] https://evnreport.com/understanding-the-region/territorial-conflicts-in-the-caucasus/

[43] https://www.ui.se/forskning/centrum-for-osteuropastudier/sceeus-report/georgia-and-the-russian-aggression/

[44] https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2008/08/russia-and-georgia-background-conflict-20080812/

[45] https://uca.edu/politicalscience/dadm-project/europerussiacentral-asia-region/georgia-1991-present/

[46] https://en.currenttime.tv/a/tbilisi-s-1991-1992-war-a-ruthless-conflict-that-had-to-be-fought-veterans-agree/31621663.html

[47] https://www.e-ir.info/2020/03/02/the-spectrum-of-georgias-policy-options-towards-abkhazia-and-south-ossetia/

[48] https://digitallibrary.un.org/record/189705?ln=en

[49] https://library.fes.de/libalt/journals/swetsfulltext/1160565.pdf ; Third World Quarterly, Vol 18, No 3, pp 509±525, 1997 – “On the front lines in the near abroad: the CIS and the OSCE in Georgia’s civil wars” – S. Neil Macfarlane; https://www.refworld.org/docid/46c58f152d.html

[50] https://books.google.it/books?id=U05OvsOPeKMC&dq=Georgian+Iraq+2008&pg=PA481&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=Georgian%20Iraq%202008&f=false   Lansford, Tom (2010). “Georgia, Role in Iraq War” In Spencer C. Tucker (ed.). The Encyclopedia of Middle East Wars: The United States in the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, and Iraq Conflicts. Vol. 2

[51] https://iwpr.net/global-voices/august-2008-russian-georgian-war-timeline

[52] https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/russia-fsu/2008-11-01/five-day-war

[53] https://www.france24.com/en/20080810-planes-drop-bombs-tbilisi-airports-georgia-russia

[54] https://www.refworld.org/docid/48ae822bc.html

[55] https://iwpr.net/global-voices/august-2008-russian-georgian-war-timeline

[56] https://www.everycrsreport.com/reports/RL34618.html

[57] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-18269210

[58] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-18269210

[59] https://www.rferl.org/a/georgia-russia-ossetia/25131531.html

[60] https://www.aljazeera.com/opinions/2015/7/27/the-creeping-russian-border-in-georgia

[61] https://www.balcanicaucaso.org/eng/Areas/Georgia/Georgia-s-European-Integration-Still-On-Track-But-Stumbling-Blocks-Remain-150897

[62] https://www.aljazeera.com/opinions/2015/7/27/the-creeping-russian-border-in-georgia

[63] https://cejiss.org/i-am-georgian-and-therefore-i-am-european-re-searching-the-europeanness-of-georgia

[64] https://www.coe.int/en/web/tbilisi/the-coe/about-coe/history

[65] https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:02014A0830(02)-20180601

[66] https://blogs.worldbank.org/europeandcentralasia/dream-come-true-georgian-nationals-can-now-travel-visa-free-most-eu-countries

[67] https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/news/georgias-visa-liberalization-with-european-union-comes-under-threat/

[68] https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/news/georgias-visa-liberalization-with-european-union-comes-under-threat/

[69] https://crrc.ge/uploads/tinymce/documents/Future%20of%20Georgia/FOG-Slides%20-%20Eng_DG.pdf

[70] https://carnegieeurope.eu/2021/04/06/georgia-s-unfinished-search-for-its-place-in-europe-pub-84253

[71] https://www.euneighbours.eu/en/east/stay-informed/publications/eu-cso-roadmap-2014-2017-georgia-key-achievements

[72] https://sicurezzainternazionale.luiss.it/2021/07/01/georgia-le-prospettive-integrazione-allunione-europea/

[73] https://sicurezzainternazionale.luiss.it/2021/07/01/georgia-le-prospettive-integrazione-allunione-europea/

[74] https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2021/country-chapters/georgia

[75] https://www.brookings.edu/blog/order-from-chaos/2021/03/03/in-georgia-an-up-and-down-road-to-justice-for-victims-of-the-august-war/

[76] https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2022/country-chapters/georgia

[77] https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2022/country-chapters/georgia

[78] https://www.balcanicaucaso.org/aree/Georgia/La-Georgia-in-piazza-contro-l-influenza-russa-195307

[79] https://www.balcanicaucaso.org/aree/Georgia/La-Georgia-chiede-di-entrare-nell-UE-216334

[80] https://civil.ge/archives/474945

[81] https://www.balcanicaucaso.org/aree/Georgia/La-Georgia-chiede-di-entrare-nell-UE-216334

[82] https://oc-media.org/ukraine-recalls-ambassador-to-georgia-over-immoral-position-of-georgian-government/

[83] https://www.npr.org/2022/03/23/1088331723/ukraine-georgia-president?t=1649004156391

[84] https://www.npr.org/2022/03/23/1088331723/ukraine-georgia-president?t=1649004156391

[85] https://www.rferl.org/a/georgia-moldova-eu-applications/31734092.html

[86] https://www.rferl.org/a/georgia-moldova-eu-applications/31734092.html

[87] https://www.euronews.com/my-europe/2022/03/04/georgia-s-ticket-to-the-eu-has-been-paid-in-blood-its-time-for-europe-to-act

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