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The annual report of the State Security Service avoids mentioning Russia as a threat
12.06.2024

Georgian Dream passed the Russian law, which prohibits free and critical opinions in Georgia, depriving the people of Georgia of the path to the European Union. 

Today, the Parliament will hear the annual report of the State Security Service at the joint session of three committees. In violation of the Rules of Procedures of the Parliament of Georgia, instead of the Head of the Service, Grigol Liluashvili, First Deputy Head Alexi Batiashvili will present the report.

The 2023 activity report of the State Security Service is still formal and extremely general. The very sparse content of the document, devoid of specificity, cannot create a real idea for the public about the activities of the Service or provide the Parliament of Georgia with the volume of information that the latter needs for the democratic parliamentary control over the State Security Service.

The annual report of the State Security Service consists of several chapters. As in previous years, the document describes the threats facing the country, but mostly without any specifics. The main flaw of the document is that the report does not specify what the threat is and where it comes from, what actions the Service took to respond to such threats, and how effective its actions were. The document is limited to extremely general phrases, such as: "various internal and external actors", "individual destructive forces of foreign countries", "appropriate" or "complex" measures were taken.  

According to the report, "there were attempts by various external and internal actors to escalate the political situation in Georgia and to prepare the ground and mobilize resources for the violent change of the government." However, no other specific information is provided.

The 2023 activity report effectively repeats the main points of the 2022 report. Among the main security problems mentioned are the Russian occupation and the Russian military bases illegally deployed in the occupied territories of the country. However, threats from Russia are discussed only in the part of the report related to the occupied territories.

In other parts of the report: "Disinformation and other dangers of hybrid war", "Disinformation and propaganda" "The so-called soft power and covert operations", "Cyber security" and others, the Russian Federation is not named as a source of danger. In these cases, the State Security Service uses a general term such as "foreign country". In some cases, it can be assumed that the citizens of a foreign country imply citizens of the Russian Federation, although the State Security Service avoids mentioning Russia as a threat (except in the chapters related to the occupied territories). For example, the report states that "operational control was carried out over the cases of establishing legal entities in the country by foreign nationals and measures were taken to prevent the possible involvement of Georgian companies in the process of circumvention of sanctions."[1]

Unlike previous years' reports, the 2023 report has a less informative section on the fight against corruption. The annual report does not give us the slightest idea about the exercise of parliamentary control over the Security Service. The document contains only statistical information, while the content of the part relating to control is vague.

The analysis of the report once again supports the opinion that the agency's resources are spent irrationally and its interest is not focused on identifying or fighting real threats, but on discrediting specific political groups and civil society organizations.



[1] Report of the State Security Service of Georgia, 2023, p. 22, available at: https://web-api.parliament.ge/storage/files/shares/angarishebi/usaprtxoeba/2023.pdf