Georgia: Once a Beacon of Democracy, Now on the Edge of Authoritarianism

April 11, 2023 4:15 pm - 5:45 pm
Please join the Institute for the Study of Human Rights and the Harriman Institute for a lecture by Marine Kapanadze on the human rights situation in Georgia and Georgia’s role in the region. Moderated by Julie George.
Georgia was always a leading state across Post-Soviet countries in building democracy. However, currently, Georgia is at a crossroads: will it become a fully authoritarian state or make acute steps towards re-establishing democratic institutions? The government does everything possible to restrict civic activism in the country and lead it to full autocracy. A recent attempt to adopt the so-called Foreign Agents Law is an obvious sign of it. Human Rights Advocate Marine Kapandze will discuss the current developments in Georgia. She will particularly focus on the human rights situation and the challenges with regard to the rule of law as the most critical issues on the way to the European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Georgia.
Marine Kapanadze is a human rights lawyer currently serving as the Civil and Political Rights Program Director at the Georgian Democracy Initiative, a local non-governmental organization in Georgia. She is actively engaged in the protection of different vulnerable groups including LGBTQ+ activists and journalists and has represented them before state bodies and courts. For more than nine years, she has been monitoring cases of discrimination, hate speech, and hate crimes; litigating strategic cases; and advocating for changes in legislation and practice. As a part of her job, she is also in charge of fundraising and communication with various stakeholders, including local and international organizations, state bodies, donors, etc. Moreover, she lectures at universities and conducts trainings on freedom of speech, national anti-discrimination mechanisms, and the rule of law.