US Department of State: ‘Georgia continued to enhance its counterterrorism legislation in 2018’

  • Based on the report, Georgia is actively engaged on counterterrorism issues at the international, regional and bilateral levels. Photo: Nino Alavidze/Agenda.ge

Agenda.ge, 2 Nov 2019 - 17:04, Tbilisi,Georgia

The US Department of State said in its recent report on terrorism that in 2018, “Georgia, a longstanding member of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, continued its robust engagement with the United States across a range of counterterrorism-related issues”.

The State Security Service of Georgia (SSSG), Georgia’s lead agency regarding terrorism-related incidents and investigations, reported a decline of support for ISIS among Georgian citizens in 2018”, the report says.

It further underscores that the SSSG arrested, prosecuted and sentenced eight individuals for supporting ISIS member Akhmet Chataev, who was killed in a counterterrorism operation in Tbilisi in 2017.

The report also notes based on the SSSG estimates that “approximately 14 Georgian nationals are in Syria or Iraq supporting terrorist groups”.

Georgia is generally capable of detecting, deterring, and responding to terrorism incidents. The SSSG has the lead in handling terrorism-related incidents and investigations, and is generally well equipped and well trained", the report reads. ​​​

The Department of State also says in its report that Georgia "is actively engaged on counterterrorism issues at the international, regional, and bilateral levels".

Georgia also cooperates closely with NATO, the Council of Europe, the Organisation of Black Sea Economic Cooperation, and the Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Moldova (GUAM) Organisation for Democracy and Economic Development.

In 2018, Georgia signed a Memorandum of Understanding on secure communication lines and a liaison agreement in March with Europol, enabling the use of Europol’s secure channels for communication", the US Department of State notes. 

In addition to existing agreements with 23 countries and the EU, the report says that Georgia also signed agreements on the exchange and mutual protection of classified information with Albania, Moldova and Italy as well as concluded similar agreements with Germany and Belarus.

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