Minority Youth in Georgia

Nino Japaridze analyzed what is needed to integrate Azeri and Armenian youths into Georgian public life.

What are some of their main grievances? The focus groups (ethnic minorities and Georgians) in Tbilisi, Marneuli, Bolnisi and Akhaltsikhe showed that education is a major problem. Minorities don’t know Georgian, and therefore said that they were not able to participate in the national university entrance exams. As a consequence, they were not happy about the educational reform.

What else? Youths say they need employment. They also want places for entertainment, a space that is for them to socialize. Drug addiction was mentioned as a big problem.

Japaridze’s recommendations are not new, but almost by default one sounds like a broken record when talking about minority integration:

  1. give minority groups the feeling that grievances are being heard and addressed;
  2. offer Georgian language classes;
  3. provide training courses on rights, so that citizens know and can exercise their rights;
  4. start regional healthcare reform;
  5. facilitate investment, to reduce unemployment.

Additionally, Japaridze used the CRRC Data Initiative 2004 to analyze the attitude of South Caucasians toward certain groups of people (homosexuals, drug addicts, alcoholics, those with HIV, and people having tuberculosis). According to the data, Georgians are most tolerant, with Armenians second, followed by Azerbaijanis. Most respondents prefer marriage with the same nationalities, but regarding friendship a third of the respondents express no national preferences.

Details on our website.