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Georgia

General Information

Admission to the OSCE: 24 March 1992

Policing overview:  The Ministry of Internal Affairs is the main law enforcement agency in Georgia.


Ministry of Internal Affairs

1. General information
2. Mission
3. Structure and organization
4. Functions
5. Staff data
6. Education / Training
7. MIA as a service provider
8. Oversight
9. Reforms
10. Basic challenges

1. General information
Extensive reforms were carried out in Georgia since 2003. First stage implied merging of the Ministry of State Security and the Ministry of Internal Affairs as a result of which functional parallelism between these bodies was eradicated and new normative base of the Ministry of Internal Affairs was created according to the principles of international law and human rights protection.

The second stage envisages structural reorganization in order to respond to the international/national recommendations and enhance Georgian police performance and accountability. The main aim of such reestablishment is to create an impartial, accountable, the community-oriented and transparent law enforcement structure.

2. Mission

The mission of the Ministry of Internal Affairs is to provide the population with a quality service and high level of safety, while ensuring respect for dignity and protection of fundamental rights of each individual.

3. Structure and organization

The Ministry is headed by a Minister, who has five Deputies. The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia functions in three main directions: policy direction, security direction and border management direction. These directions incorporate relevant structural sub-divisions (Departments), territorial agencies, dependent state agencies and legal entities of Public Law (LEPL) existing within the field of its administration. Each direction is supervised by relevant Deputy Minister. The Deputy Ministers supervising relevant direction are accountable to the Minister of Internal Affairs.
 
MoIA consists of 14 departments, 15 main divisions (11 out of them representing regional bodies), one service, two centers, one bureau, one government sub-agency and four legal entities under the direct management of the Ministry. The regional bodies of the Ministry of Internal Affairs comprise divisions, district units and sub-units. They are accountable to the management of the Ministry as well as to the respective departments of the Ministry, such as the Criminal Police Department, Patrol Police Department etc.
 
Legislation regulating activities of the Ministry of Internal Affairs:
  • Constitution of Georgia;
  • Law on Police;
  • Law on State Border;
  • Law on Operative-Investigative Activity;
  • Criminal Code of Georgia;
  • Criminal Procedure Code of Georgia;
  • Law on Organized Crime and Racket;
  • The Police Code of Ethics;
  • International Agreements of Georgia;
  • Other Laws and Regulations;
  • Presidential decrees and edicts;
  • Normative Acts Issued by the Government of Georgia;
  • Normative Acts issued by the Ministry of Internal Affairs in accordance with Constitution and Laws of Georgia;
  • Code of Administrative Violations of Georgia
  • Law of Georgia on Fight against Trafficking in Human Beings;
  • Law of Georgia on Combating Terrorism;
To view an organization chart of the Ministry of Internal Affairs please visit the Attachments section below.
 
4. Functions
The main functions of the Ministry of Internal Affairs are to:
  • Protect state interest, human rights, civil liberties and property rights;
  • Ensure protection of green and blue border as well as control the border crossing points;
  • Prevent, investigate and combat criminal activities;
  • Protect and ensure public order and security;
  • Conduct preliminary investigation and criminal prosecution;
  • Search for missing people;
  • Collect and disseminate relevant information on criminals within the geographic area of its responsibility;
  • Conduct other activities prescribed by legislation.

5. Staff data
As of March 2011, the total number of staff at the MIA is 33,905 with 11,053 of them being uniformed police officers. Approximately 12 per cent of MIA employees are female (i.e. 4,573).

6. Education / Training

Legal Entity of Public Law - Academy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs represents the only educational institution responsible for police training in the country. 
MIA Academy provides three categories three categories of the trainings:
  • Basic Training Courses – (for future policemen);
  • Re-training Courses – (for in-service police);
  • Promotion Courses – (for promotion of in-service police personnel).
The duration of the basic training courses is approximately 6 months. 
Academy trains the personnel for the following agencies: 
  • Patrol Police;
  • Criminal Police;
  • Border Police;
  • Firefighters and Rescue Service;
  • Customs and Revenue Service which is not a part of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, but the Ministry of Finance of Georgia.
Patrol Police Faculty provides basic training courses (duration 627 hours)  as well as in-service courses for Patrol Police personnel;
 
Neighborhood Police Faculty provides basic training courses (duration 615 hours) for candidates selected for Criminal Police;
 
Border Police Faculty provides basic  training courses (duration 418 hours) as well as in-service courses for Border Police, Cost Guard  personnel;
 
Tactical Training Division provides trainees with physical and tactical trainings on coercive  use of force, special police equipment, martial arts and fire arms;
 
Fire fighters, search and rescue faculty provides certification courses for fire fighters and search-rescue personnel;
 
Special Training Centre of the Academy of the Ministry of Interior Affairs has been functioning since September 2004. It obtained the former functions of the Academy of Security after the reorganization in February 2006. The Special Training Centre ensures the preparation of personnel for the State Intelligence and other Special Services.
 
The MIA Academy is hosting the number of international trainings/workshops/conferences every year conducted by various national, international and donor organizations as well as different embassies accredited in Georgia. They provide short-term, ad-hoc training courses for in-service police officers to raise qualification, share vocational experience and exchange knowledge.
 
One of the exceptionally important structural elements of the MIA Academy is archive which is accessible to every member of society - not only scholars, researchers and journalists, but also those with a non-professional interest in the past.
 
7. MIA as a service provider
Legal Entities of Public Law - Security Police, Emergency and Operative Response Center and Service Agency offer population different kind of services.
 
⇒ Security Police – “125”
Security Service department offers population the combined protection system using police and technical means which implies:
  • Protection of houses and country cottages;
  • Protection of commercial facilities and offices;
  • Protection of national treasury and valuable items;
  • Protection of strategic facilities;
  • Personal guard;
  • Escorting of visitors, cargo and monetary assets;
  • Security of private and public events;
  • Monitoring of vehicles by GPS/GPRS system.

⇒ Emergency and Operative Response Center – “112”

Emergency Response Center ensures operative response to crisis situations. Calls are received via unified emergency number 112 which is free of charge and available 24/7. 

Emergency Response Center receives and processes incoming calls and ensures the provision of relevant services: 
  • Fire-Rescue Service;
  • Ambulance;
  • Patrol Police.
Emergency Response Center also provides road safety management throughout Tbilisi by monitoring crossroads and movement of vehicles in live regime during 24 hours. In case of road accidents the relevant brigade is swiftly sent to the place of destination. 
 
⇒ Service Agency
 
Service Agency ensures the provision of the following services:
  • Issuance of driving licenses;
  • Issuance of criminal records and documents concerning the legal state of the vehicle;
  • Registration, import and export of vehicles;
  • Registration of the pledge on the vehicle and issuing of the pledge certificate;
  • Registration of Fire-arms and all relevant issues;
  • Authentication with Apostil of documents issued by the Service Agency; 

8. Oversight

The General Inspection is the main sub-unit at the MoIA which is in charge of internal oversight. It ensures detection and adequate response to the facts of violation of ethics and disciplinary norms, improper fulfillment of official duties and of certain unlawful actions committed within the system of the Ministry.
 
Anti-corruption Agency of the MoIA also conducts internal oversight. It reveals corruption related crimes and implements preventive as well as repressive measures against the individuals involved in corruption. 
 
Human Rights and Monitoring Main Division also carries out internal oversight. It is responsible for conducting monitoring of the Temporary Accommodation staff in order to ensure human rights protection.
 
External oversight is conducted by the Parliament of Georgia, Main Prosecutors Office of Georgia, State Audit Office of Georgia and by the Public Defender’s Office.
 

9. Reforms

⇒ Structural reforms

Restructuring the Ministry - The Constitutional Security Department (CSD) and the Special Operative Department (SOD) were abolished. The Anti-corruption and the State Security agencies were established instead of the CSD. The Anti-corruption Agency carries out revelation of conflicts of interest in the public service and the fight against corruption and malfeasance by state officials. After the abolishment of the SOD, the Central Criminal Police Department carries out its functions.

Establishment of the Reforms and Development Agency - In order to institutionalize the MoIA policy and planning process, to carry out the reforms and coordinate the monitoring of their implementation, the Reforms and Development Agency was established, which is also responsible for elaboration of strategic and departmental documents, development policy and plans of the MoIA. Harmonization of relevant legislation with Euro-Atlantic standards, periodic analysis of the system and activities of the Ministry, elaboration of recommendations based thereon are also the functions of the Agency. Existing practice was changed by the new approach of conducting permanent evaluation and analysis of the MoIA system, needs assessment and rational utilization of the resources.

The process of establishing the Main Division for Migration within the Patrol Police Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs has been initiated – Main Division for Migration will be responsible for detection, detention and expulsion of irregular migrants. Within the framework of the concept, the Ministry has developed the unified immigration database, which collects and processes information regarding border cross by foreigners and validity of their visa. This program is equipped with alarm function which activates when the person is staying on the territory of Georgia illegally.

In the nearest future, the work on building the Accommodation Center for irregular migrants will be commenced. The Statute for the Accommodation Center of Irregular Migrants has been elaborated. The Center will accommodate irregular migrants until their identification and/or expulsion from the country. The draft statute defines the structure of the center, its scope of activity, objectives, conditions and rules of detention, also rights and duties of detainees.

⇒ Legislative reforms

Law of Georgia “On Police” - New Law “On Police” was adopted by the Parliament of Georgia on October 4, 2013. It aims to create legal ground for sophisticated, politically unbiased police of European standards, protecting public security and legal order. Despite sharing features of the police systems of several European countries, especially Germany, as well as taking in account international standards, the peculiarities of Georgia were maximally considered during the work on the draft law. This law complies fully with the constitutional principle of Definetness and protects persons from the arbitrariness of police on the one hand, but on the other hand protects police officer. The latter can define in advance the legitimacy of his/her action, as well as the legitimate consequences of this action.

Draft law on the “Road Traffic” - The rationale for developing the draft law on the “Road Traffic” is to ensure compliance of road traffic regulatory norms and provisions with the Vienna Conventions on “Road Traffic” and “Road Signs and Signals”, as well as with other European agreements regulating the road safety. The Draft has been developed on the basis of sharing the experience of some European countries in this sphere.

Law on “International Law Enforcement Cooperation” - In the beginning of 2013 the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia elaborated the draft Law of Georgia on “International Law Enforcement Cooperation” for the realization of efficient international cooperation in the field of prevention, detection, and suppression of crimes on the basis of international treaties, principle of reciprocity and ad hoc decision made by the respective minister or deputy minister. The law was adopted by the Parliament of Georgia and signed by the President of Georgia on 4th of October 2013. This law also aims to fully implement the obligations regarding international law enforcement cooperation arising from the relevant bilateral and multilateral international treaties of Georgia, especially from CoE Second Additional Protocol to the European Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters. EU expert mission organized within TAIEX has assessed the law as an outstanding legal document.

The Georgian Police Code of Ethics - Within the framework of the Criminal Justice Reform, along with other normative acts, the Ministry of Internal Affairs elaborated the Georgian Police Code of Ethics. The main objective of the Code is to enhance the loyalty of the policemen to the norms of professional ethics, strengthen high moral values and sense of personal responsibility for service duties.
Code of Ethics is obligatory for police officers, while on and off the duty. The police officer must be constantly ready to carry out his/her duties.

Rules of Conduct for Patrol Police Officer, Patrol-Inspector (Border-Control Officer), Border Police Officer and the Staff of Temporary Detention Isolators (TDI) - Within the framework of the MoIA reforms, police instructions were elaborated for various units. The main purpose of these instructions is to protect human rights. Instructions emphasize the importance of being in the public service, intolerance to corruption, and responsibility for following illegal orders.

Law of Georgia on “Legal Status of Foreigners and Stateless Persons” - Together with the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Justice and the Office of State Minister of Georgia for Diaspora Issues, the Ministry of Internal Affairs has elaborated the draft of amendments to the Law of Georgia on “Legal Status of Foreigners and Stateless Persons” within the framework of the Governmental Commission for Migration. The project defined following amendments: Georgian visa categories and its issuance, extension and termination procedures; the rules and conditions for granting a residence permit; principles and procedures for the expulsion of aliens from Georgia; procures and terms for the appeal decision on expulsion; detention conditions and procedures for the purpose of deportation, also conditions for the voluntary return.

10. Basic challenges

  • Develop and improve migration system;
  • Introduce high standards in the Temporary Accommodation Center for Irregular Migrants;
  • Development of the system of security of state borders;

Attachments

  Organizational chart – Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia [English] (275.61 Kb) Organizational chart – Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia [English] (Format: PDF) http://polis-cp.osce.org/countries/view?item_id=70&attach_id=200
English chart illustrating the structure of the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs
  International Relations Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs [English] (342.79 Kb) International Relations Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs [English] (Format: ) http://polis-cp.osce.org/countries/view?item_id=70&attach_id=201
Organizational chart
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Criminal Justice System

1. General information
2. Prosecution
3. Penitentiary system
4. Ministry of Justice

1. General information
The court system in Georgia consists of District Courts, an Appeals Court and the Supreme Court. Each level has again three panels of judges – for civil, criminal and administrative cases.

2. Prosecution
The Prosecutor’s Office carries out criminal prosecution as well as oversight over pre-trial investigation performed by other investigative agencies. It consists of the Office of the Prosecutor General, two offices in the Autonomous Republics of Abkhazia and Adjaria, eight Regional Offices and 30 District Offices. The Office of the Prosecutor General is at the top of the hierarchical structure and coordinates the system. For more information on the structure please visit the official website via the link in the Links section.

3. Penitentiary system
The Ministry of Corrections and Legal Assistance of Georgia (MCLA), as an independent body, was created on February 1, 2009 in accordance with the law of Georgia on “Structure, Proxy and Activity rule of the Government of Georgia”. By January 30, 2009 resolution of government of Georgia the structure and authority of the Ministry was determined.

The main functions and missions

  • To perform and organize the execution of sentences in accordance with existing legislation;
  • To Manage and ensure the adequate medical treatment of Prisoners;
  • To ensure the rights and freedoms of prisoners;
  • To coordinate the work of MCLA;
  • To conduct other missions according to Georgian legislation.

Organization and structure

Following state bodies are under the organizational structure of the Ministry:

  • Penitentiary Department:
    • Organizes the execution of sentences;
    • Manages and organizes Penitentiary Establishments;
    • In the scope of its competence, prevents and investigates criminal cases in the penitentiary establishments;
    • Conducts administrative punishments and encouragement of prisoners.

Legal entities of public law under the subordination of the Ministry are:

  1. Free Legal Aid Service:
    • Elaborates Legal Documentation;
    • Protects convicts, suspects, accused persons in the criminal cases;
    • Protects victims of crime;
    • Represents clients in civil and administrative cases.
  2. National Probation Agency:
    • Organizes and controls the execution of non-custodial sentences;
    • In the scope of its competence elaborates legal acts;
    • Creates data base and statistics of non-custodial sentences;
    • Monitors and controls the activities of probation officers.
  3. Penitentiary and Probation Training Centre:
    • Creates appropriate training programs for the personnel of the Ministry;
    • Raises qualification and retrains staff;
    • Organizes certification and testing process;
    • Elaborates and publishes methodological and additional literature.

Supervision

General Inspection is the main unit at the Ministry, which is in charge of internal monitoring. It reveals and responds to any violation of the ethics and disciplinary norm, investigates inappropriate performance of service and duties.
External supervision is conducted by the Parliament of Georgia and office of Public Defender.

Achievements/Future Plans

In 2010, new Code on Imprisonment entered into force, which liberalized the rights and freedoms of inmates. Three new Establishments were opened, which are in compliance with European standards. The reconstruction process of infrastructure for long-term visits has been finished. As a part of criminal justice reform, individual scheme of serving sentences, as well as individual approach by social workers and psychologists toward juvenile convicts were implemented. According to new code on Imprisonment, the councils for early conditional release were established, which discusses cases for early conditional release in the end of every month.

Except councils for early conditional release, in order to resolve the problem of overcrowding, in 2011 GoG, plans to implement “community service”, as an alternative sanction to imprisonment. It is, also, planned to modernize medical units in Penitentiary Establishments and equip them with modern technology, as well as to upraise the qualification of medical personnel. Construction of new building for 1000 inmates with tuberculosis disease is also planned to be launched on the territory of Medical Establishment for Tubercular Inmates in Ksani. The practice of video-conferencing is going to be implemented. Intensive cooperation is planned with national and international organizations as well as with representatives of private sector for the purpose of re-socialization and rehabilitation of convicts. Different educational, rehabilitation and employment projects are also planned to be carried out in Penitentiary Establishments.

4. Ministry of Justice

The Ministry of Justice is a principal body responsible for policy development, execution of legal proceedings and protection of the public. It plays a key role in democratic development and improvement of the legal system in the state. Under the influence of democratic reforms, the responsibilities of the Ministry were expanded to include such functions as:

  • Protecting State interests at national and international courts and tribunals;
  • Identifying standards of active regulatory acts;
  • Harmonizing legislation with international guidelines;
  • Formation of the State Register;
  • Adjustment of emigration and migration procedures;
  • Notary Functions;
  • Public Registry Services;
  • Civil Registry Services;
  • State Archives;
  • Enforcement of court decisions;
  • Arrangement of the state representation at the European Court of Human Rights. 
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Links

Ministry of Internal Affairs - Georgia  Ministry of Internal Affairs - Georgia http://police.ge/
Official website of the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs, available in Georgian and English.

MIA Border Police of Georgia  MIA Border Police of Georgia http://www.gbg.ge/
Official website of the Border Police of Georgia, available in Georgian and English

Ministry of Justice - Georgia  Ministry of Justice - Georgia http://www.justice.gov.ge/
Official website of the Ministry of Justice, available in Georgian and English.

Supreme Court - Georgia  Supreme Court - Georgia http://www.supremecourt.ge/eng/
Official website of the Georgian Supreme Court, available in Georgian and English

Prosecutor's Office - Georgia  Prosecutor's Office - Georgia http://pog.gov.ge/eng/home
Official website of the Prosecutor's Office, available in Georgian and English.

OSCE/ ODIHR Legislationline - Georgia  OSCE/ ODIHR Legislationline - Georgia http://www.legislationline.org/topics/country/29/topic/12
Legislationline is a gratis internet-based legislative database published and maintained by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR).

Last Updated: 19 December 2013

Also see: Russian Federation, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Turkey

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