Victim Assistance

Last updated: 04 December 2017

Georgia is responsible for landmine survivors, cluster munition victims, and survivors of other types of explosive remnants of war (ERW). Georgia has made a commitment to provide victim assistance through the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW).[1] The total number of survivors in Georgia is unknown, though it is estimated to be more than 700.[2]

Assessing victim assistance needs

The Georgia Red Cross Society (GRCS) continued to collect data on the needs of mine/ERW casualties and their families with the aim of “gaining a comprehensive picture of those needs and formulating an effective response.” With ICRC support, data collection by the National Red Cross Society continued in Georgia, including in Abkhazia, to assess the socio-economic needs of mine/ERW victims and formulate an appropriate response. An additional GRCS staff member was trained to update and maintain the mine-action database.[3]

During 2016 and through 2017, the United States (US) provided ongoing support for the development of prosthetic rehabilitation capabilities in Georgia.[4]

Victim assistance coordination

There is no victim assistance coordination mechanism in Georgia. The Ministry of Labor, Health and Social Affairs coordinates disability issues, including those related to the mine/ERW survivors who have official disability status.

Service accessibility and effectiveness

Victim assistance activities

Name of organization

Type of organization

Type of activity

Rehabilitation Center for Persons with Disabilities


Prosthetics services



Prosthetics services

Georgian Foundation For Prosthetic Orthopedic Rehabilitation (GEFPOR)

National NGO

Prosthetics services

Association of Disabled Women and Mothers of Disabled Children (DEA)

National NGO

Educational support for children and adults with disabilities, including mine/ERW survivors, socio-economic inclusion, legal advice, and awareness-raising


National NGO

Assistance to survivors and their families, awareness-raising


International organization

Data collection; economic inclusion, emergency assistance, awareness-raising, support to persons with disabilities

International Organization for Migration (IOM) and ITF Enhancing Human Security (ITF)

International organizations

Socio-economic support, including microloans; awareness-raising


The ICRC continued to assist survivors through micro-economic initiatives in Georgia.[5] This assistance was supplemented by business training, provided with help from the GRCS.[6]

In South Ossetia, 19 disabled persons accessed physical rehabilitation services and/or obtained assistive devices with ICRC financial assistance. The ICRC also supported awareness-raising activities on the hazardousness of mine/ERW. These activities included a football match for mine/ERW victims featured on television, an ICRC film, and a radio interview with a representative of the ICRC.[7]

In 2016, the ICBL-GC conducted a joint economic inclusion project for persons with disabilities with two other NGOs operating in Georgia. The project was funded by the European Union. Through this project, the ICBL-GC and its partners registered over 500 persons with disabilities in their job seekers database, including some mine/ERW survivors.[8]

GEFPOR fitted prostheses to 61 new patients, three of whom were mine/ERW victims.[9] In September 2015, the construction of a new premises for GEFPOR was completed, having been initiated in 2013. The center was officially opened in November 2016.[10]

The ITF focused on raising the awareness of Georgian representatives about mine action, and in particular mine victim assistance, in order to encourage the creation of national capacities.[11] Established in 2009, the joint IOM and ITF economic inclusion project for mine/ERW was implemented as a pilot program until 2012. The second phase of this program concluded in 2015.[12] The project aimed to improve the standard of living of mine/ERW victims and their families through enhanced employability, greater access to seed funding for starting/expanding their own business, and through improved socio-economic support.[13]

There was a continuing lack of psychological support and social reintegration activities in Georgia.

The law prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities; however, these provisions were not effectively enforced and social, educational, and employment discrimination against persons with disabilities remained a problem.[14] In 2014, Georgia adopted a law on the elimination of all forms of discrimination.[15] Legislation required access to buildings for persons with disabilities and stipulated fines for noncompliance. However, very few public facilities or buildings were accessible.[16] Local councils focused on addressing disability-related problems were established in 22 municipalities as part of the government’s 2014–2016 Action Plan on Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities.[17]

Georgia signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) on 10 July 2009 and ratified it on 13 March 2014.

[2] Email from Narine Berikashvili, Monitor Researcher, 17 June 2010; and interview with Maia Buchukuri, ICBL-GC, 12 September 2013.

[3] Email from Nino Burtikashvili, Deputy Secretary General, GRCS, 25 July 2014; and ICRC, “Annual Report 2013,” Geneva, May 2014, p. 376.

[4] Amended Protocol II of the Convention on Conventional Weapons National Annual Report (for calendar year 2016).

[5] ICRC, “Annual Report 2016,” Geneva, May 2017, p. 408.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid., p. 410.

[8] Email from Maia Buchukuri, ICBL-GC, 20 June 2017.

[9] GEFPOR, “Statistics,” undated.

[10] GEFPOR, “Home,” undated; and ICRC, “Georgia on my mind (and back on its feet),” 2 December 2015.

[11] ITF, “Georgia,” undated.

[12] International Organization for Migration (IOM) Georgia, “Assistance for mine victims,” undated.

[13] ITF, “Annual Report 2013,” Ljubljana, 2014, pp. 60–62.

[14] US Department of State, “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2016: Georgia,” Washington, DC, March 2017, p. 39.

[15] Email from Madonna Kharebava, DEA, 8 July 2014.

[16] US Department of State, “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2016: Georgia,” Washington, DC, March 2017, p. 40.

[17] Ibid., p. 41.