U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Terrorism 2004 - Georgia

The Georgian Government remained deeply committed to combating international and domestic terrorism in 2004 and has consistently and publicly condemned acts of terror. Georgia is still used to a limited degree as a terrorist transit state, although much less so since the government crackdown on the Pankisi Gorge in late 2002. Stepped-up Georgian law enforcement counterterrorism operations in late 2004 in Pankisi, in the wake of the Beslan terrorist attack in September 2004 in Russia, have further eroded the ability of transnational terrorist groups to use the Pankisi Gorge as a transit area.

Georgian law enforcement capabilities are limited, although improving through internal reform and US Government and Western donor technical and financial assistance. In particular, the United States is providing counterterrorism training via the State Department's Antiterrorism Assistance Program. The Procuracy has a special unit of six prosecutors and investigators solely dedicated to terrorism financing and money laundering cases. Efforts to reform the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Ministry of State Security and enhance their counterterrorism capabilities are constrained by lack of adequate resources, equipment, and, mostly, training. These reform efforts, coupled with frequent personnel turnover, have created confusion and prevented development of an overall counterterrorism policy. Border guard and customs reform is continuing, and over the past few years, maritime, air, and communications capabilities have improved considerably.

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