Economic Issues and Ethnopolitical Tension: The Example of the Region of Samtskhe-Javakheti in Georgia**

Economic Issues and Ethnopolitical Tension: The Example of the Region of Samtskhe-Javakheti in... It would be foolish, in forming our expectations, to attach great weight to matters which are very uncertain. (John Maynard Keynes "The General'Iheory...°) 1. INTRODUCTION: SUBJECT AND STARTING POINTS This article considers the economic dimension of mitigating ethnopolitical tension in the South Caucasus. In particular, Georgia's sensitive Samtskhe-Javakheti (S-J) prov- ince, which has potential for fully-fledged ethnopolitical conflict, is used as an example to discuss the background and substance of this issue. S-J is a land-locked administrative region on the politically sensitive southern fringe of Georgia. It neighbours Armenia and Turkey, the predominantly Muslim-Georgian populated Ajaria and the Georgian administrative unit of Kvemo Kartli with its considerable Muslim-Azeri population. S- J has an almost completely Christian population that is nevertheless ecclesiastically and ethnically divided in itself. The Javakheti side of S-J is predominantly Armenian, while S-J as a whole has an ethnic Georgian majority population. S-J is economically under- developed and socially marginalized. While its inhabitants perceive contemporary issues largely through ethnic interpretations and it is subject to contradictory foreign interests, S-J has not turned into an area of open conflict so far. This article examines the ethnic composition and interethnic atmosphere of S-J. Both are understood to http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png European Yearbook of Minority Issues Online Brill

Economic Issues and Ethnopolitical Tension: The Example of the Region of Samtskhe-Javakheti in Georgia**

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
eISSN
2211-6117
DOI
10.1163/221161104X00174
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

It would be foolish, in forming our expectations, to attach great weight to matters which are very uncertain. (John Maynard Keynes "The General'Iheory...°) 1. INTRODUCTION: SUBJECT AND STARTING POINTS This article considers the economic dimension of mitigating ethnopolitical tension in the South Caucasus. In particular, Georgia's sensitive Samtskhe-Javakheti (S-J) prov- ince, which has potential for fully-fledged ethnopolitical conflict, is used as an example to discuss the background and substance of this issue. S-J is a land-locked administrative region on the politically sensitive southern fringe of Georgia. It neighbours Armenia and Turkey, the predominantly Muslim-Georgian populated Ajaria and the Georgian administrative unit of Kvemo Kartli with its considerable Muslim-Azeri population. S- J has an almost completely Christian population that is nevertheless ecclesiastically and ethnically divided in itself. The Javakheti side of S-J is predominantly Armenian, while S-J as a whole has an ethnic Georgian majority population. S-J is economically under- developed and socially marginalized. While its inhabitants perceive contemporary issues largely through ethnic interpretations and it is subject to contradictory foreign interests, S-J has not turned into an area of open conflict so far. This article examines the ethnic composition and interethnic atmosphere of S-J. Both are understood to

Journal

European Yearbook of Minority Issues OnlineBrill

Published: Jan 1, 1

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