US Department of State Names State Security Service of Georgia the Lead Agency in Countering Terrorism in Its Report

US Department of State has published a 2019 Report on Terrorism, in which among other countries, activities carried out by Georgia are assessed.

The document names the State Security Service as a lead agency handling terrorism-related incidents and investigations.

According to the report, there were no terrorist incidents in Georgia in 2019.

According to the document, in 2019, in order to strengthen CT legislation, several amendments to the criminal code have been successfully implemented in Georgia. SSSG-led Permanent Interagency Commission has been established in the country; three-year National Strategy for the Fight against Terrorism and action plan have been approved.


The document of the US State Department notes, that Georgia is capable of detecting, deterring, and responding to terrorism incidents.


“The SSSG is the lead agency handling terrorism-related incidents and investigations, and is generally well equipped and well trained. The SSSG’s Counterterrorism Unit continues to receive regular training and equipment. In January, recognizing the need for a whole-of-government response to the challenges of terrorism, the Georgian government approved the National Strategy of Georgia on the Fight Against Terrorism 2019-2021 with an accompanying action plan. The SSSG-chaired Permanent Interagency Commission is responsible for oversight of the strategy and action plan and providing annual status reports on implementation. In 2019, Georgia also carried out exercises to enhance interoperability and cooperation between agencies with CT-related mandates” – the document reads.


The document underlines that Georgia remained a strong U.S. security partner. In 2019, Georgia, a longstanding member of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, continued its robust engagement with the United States across a range of CT-related issues. Georgia participated in numerous bilateral CT exercises and trainings with the United States.


According to the document, Georgia continued to improve its border, maritime, and aviation security. In November, Georgian authorities cooperated closely with the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and other international partners in the SBU’s detention of ISIS commander and Georgian citizen Tsezar Tokhosashvili, aka Al Bara Shishani, in Ukraine.


According to the document, in 2019, Georgia continued its CVE efforts by focusing on initiatives in education, civic and political participation, media and access to information, gender equality, preserving minority culture and identity, justice and law-enforcement activities, and social and regional integration. In 2019, Georgia continued to work with international and local partners on multi-year CVE projects, including with USAID.

The document also mentions that Georgia is actively engaged on CT issues at the international, regional, and bilateral levels. Georgia cooperates closely with NATO, the CoE, the OSCE, the Organization of Black Sea Economic Cooperation; and the Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Moldova (GUAM) Organization for Democracy and Economic Development.


In November, Georgia and the EU jointly hosted a seminar for media and civil society representatives in Georgia on the role of media in countering terrorism and organized crime.


In 2019, Georgia participated in the third and fourth plenary meetings of the CoE’s CT committee. The SSSG also represented Georgia in the 22nd and 23rd sessions of GUAM’s Counterterrorism sub-working group.

In June, Georgia and the OSCE jointly hosted a seminar on the involvement of society in the prevention of terrorism. The seminar, the first of its kind to be hosted in Tbilisi, emphasized prevention-oriented measures as a key component of Georgia’s National Strategy on the Fight against Terrorism.


The document mentions that Georgia adopted the Law on Facilitating the Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing, which aims to create effective monitoring and enforcement mechanisms, enhances the ability of law enforcement to retrieve information from the FMS, and includes insurance brokers, law firms, and certified accountants in the list of reporting entities.