Georgia Geography

Georgia Geography

Land of contradictions, eloquently evoked by the characteristics of a territory that is now harsh and wild, now luxuriant and semi-tropical, ranging from the alpine snows of the Caucasus to the semi-desert areas of the east. Among the folds of the region, marked over time by complex historical passages, the vestiges of a culturally rich past are hidden, as demonstrated by the religious complexes, the rock cities and the ruins of the Persian, Byzantine and Arab empires; or as evidenced by the signs left by the events of recent history: from the rebellion during the Bolshevik revolution of 1917 to the difficult process of joining the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), to the violent secessionist pressures of some internal provinces (Southern Ossetia and Abkhazia), with their load of civil strife, exodus, instability. Despite the repeated economic crises and internal difficulties caused by this complex socio-political framework, Georgia has been able to show, as widespread features of the population, a great openness and at the same time a firm stubbornness: the country has in fact repeatedly tried to conquer, throughout its history, its own physiognomy and unity, to the detriment of the successive occupants over time, animated by a strong vocation for independence and the claim of a national identity. Even with regard to the established power, the Georgians have repeatedly expressed their voice for the achievement of greater margins of democracy and transparency: the

POLITICS

Having become an independent republic in 1991, after the breakup of the USSR, Georgia joined the CIS since 1993 and, according to the Constitution of May 17, 1995, is a presidential republic. The president is elected by direct universal suffrage for 5 years. The Parliament, made up of 235 members, is made up of a Chamber of Deputies elected for 4 years (including 10 representatives of Abkhazia in exile). The Constitution provides for the creation of a Senate on a federal basis, when the territorial unity of the country is restored. At the administrative level, Georgia includes, in addition to the regions, the autonomous province of South Ossetia, the two autonomous republics of Abkhazia and Ajaria and the city of T’bilisi. The judiciary is independent; at the procedural level, the system is divided into three levels of judgment, at the top of which is the Supreme Court, whose members are elected by parliament every 10 years, on the advice of the president. The Constitutional Court, made up of 9 members, holds the power of judgment on legislative and governmental acts. The military apparatus consists of three armed forces: army (including the national guard), navy and air force. The military service is compulsory and lasts 18 months.. The school system, structured on the Soviet model until 1980, was modified after the proclamation of independence in the direction of safeguarding the Georgian language and history. Education is compulsory and free for 9 years, from the age of 6 to 14. Primary school lasts 4 years (from 6 to 10 years); secondary education begins at 10 and is divided into two cycles, the first of 5 years and the second of 2. Higher education is given in the only technical institute and the only university in the country. Georgia has a very high literacy rate, widespread among almost the entire population.

HUMAN GEOGRAPHY

According to localtimezone, the population density of Georgia is equal to 67 residents / kmĀ², but its distribution does not regularly cover the territory: the rural component of the population is still high and 52.5% of Georgians live in urban areas. Half of these are concentrated in the capital, which alone collects a quarter of the country’s total population. The main cities after T’bilisi are Kutaisi, Bat’umi (in the Autonomous Republic of Ajaria), Rust’avi, of smaller dimensions, Zugdidi. The ethnic composition of Georgia includes predominantly Georgians (83.8%), but in the country there are conspicuous minorities of Azeris (6.5%), Armenians (5.7%), mainly concentrated in the capital T’bilisi, Russians (1.5%), Ossetians (0.9%), Greeks (0.3%), Abhasi (0.1%) and others (1,2%). Georgia’s modest birth rate is due in part to the country’s precarious economic situation, in part to the conflicts and ethnic cleansing in Abkhazia and Ossetia, at the origin of a massive flow of emigration to Russia and the West.

ENVIRONMENT

About one third of the Georgian territory is covered with forests; along the valleys of the Rion and Inguri, also due to the abundant rains, the spontaneous vegetation is luxuriant, with broad-leaved trees and Mediterranean species that give way, in the mountainous region of the Caucasus, to conifers and pastures. In the East, however, the steppes predominate. In the country there are nature reserves, naturalistic oases and 4 national parks, for a total of 3.6% of protected areas. Among these, the Borjomi-Kharagauli park which, with its extension, occupies almost 1% of the entire territory, covers three climatic zones: the humid semitropical one of the Kolkheti, the subalpine one of the Little Caucasus and the one with a prevalence of dry climate of the Meskheti -Javakheti to the south.

Georgia Geography

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