Foreign Affairs Committee

The Caucasus inquiry

Inquiry status: Concluded

Due to the general election on 12 December 2019 the Committee has now closed this inquiry. Following the dissolution of Parliament on 6 November, all Select Committees will cease to exist until after the general election. If an inquiry on this subject is held in the future, the Committee may refer to the evidence already gathered as part of this inquiry.

Scope of the inquiry

Terms of Reference

Sitting at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, the Caucasus is a geopolitically important region which has experienced challenges to security and stability, driven both from external and internal factors. As the region continues to develop, what are the prospects of creating stable democracies in the region, and what role can and should the FCO play in helping to achieve this?

This inquiry focuses upon the FCO's relationship with states in the Caucasus (Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan) as a means of analysing the UK's approach to states along Russia's periphery. The experiences of these states encapsulate the challenges of the broader region in a microcosm; on the frontline against Russia, they have complex relationships both with Moscow and between themselves, and face significant challenges in developing state resilience and effective governance. This inquiry will consider the state of play in the region and the effectiveness of UK support.

Written submissions are invited on the following points:

  • Threats to state security and state/ societal resilience across the region (to cover topics such as disinformation; energy politics; active, frozen and potential conflicts; conflict management and peacebuilding, threats to democracy)
    o Russian ‘fifth column’ activity within states, frozen conflicts in Ossetia, Abkhazia and Nagorno Karabakh
  • Developing institutional capacity (to cover areas such as tackling corruption, governance and institutions, cyber security)
    o Good Governance Fund activities in Georgia and Armenia, Eastern Partnership Programme activities in Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan
  • Developing societal freedoms (to cover press freedom, developing civil society)
  • Human rights and the rule of law
    o Council of Europe action against Azerbaijan
    o Human rights of citizens living in Ossetia, Abkhazia and Nagorno Karabakh
  • Bilateral relations between the UK and states in the region
  • UK support towards states in the region in multilateral fora (e.g. EU, NATO)
    o Eastern Partnership
  • UK Government project and programming support to the region on the areas outlined above (namely through the CSSF/ Good Governance Fund and Magna Carta Fund)
    o Means by which UK support is delivered and its effectiveness (NGO/ state led)

Latest evidence


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