Georgian media often disseminates myths about anti-Georgian activities of a philanthropist, George Soros. An interview of the leader of political union Georgian Idea, Sandro Bregadze, containing another disinformation, was published in September 12-18, 2016 edition of Asaval-Dasavali. More precisely, Sandro Bregadze made the following statement:
“The Georgian population should know by any means – the Central Office of Soros’ Foundation, located in Budapest, allocated EUR 114 thousand to anti-Georgian non-governmental organizations, so that they confront the initiative group of the referendum and personally me! We are also aware that Soros’ Foundation will allocate additional EUR 3 million to Georgian ‘liberast’ NGOs, for them to strengthen attacks on national forces!”
Myth # 1. Soros Funds NGOs Covertly
Information about the programs of the Open Society Foundation is published on its web-page and is accessible for every interested individual. The information also includes the financial resources allocated for grant calls and programs. The information about the winning organizations in the foundation’s calls and their respective activities is transparent, too.
Myth # 2. Soros Fights against the Georgian Culture
Open Society Foundation Georgia has funded 365 projects in the sphere of culture since 1994. The projects included various directions, such as cultural heritage census and photo-fixation, archaeology, museums and modern art development.
Myth # 3. Soros Fights Orthodox Church
Open Society Foundation Georgia has funded projects concerning restoration of churches and frescoes, including the famous Kintsvisi Angel fresco.
Myth # 4. Soros Fights the Education System
In 1994-2014, Open Society Foundation Georgia funded 1,091 students with the aim of studying abroad. The foundation spent USD 12,522,00 in education and science, funding projects concerning education policy and development of pre-school, school and higher education and science.
Myth # 5. The Goal of Soros is to Strengthen “Anti-National” Organizations
The biggest projects of the foundation in the direction of human rights include reforming legal aid system, re-training employees of the law enforcement system, rehabilitating torture victims and strengthening human rights protection organizations.
- Independent system of legal aid has been created. More than 10,000 citizens have already addressed it;
- Case of 580 IDPs has been submitted to the European Court of Human Rights;
- Computer program for work management of the legal aid has been created. 10 state institutions, 2 universities and 5 NGOs are already using it;
- 10 teaching modules have been created for Police Patrol employees;
- Up to 300 police officers and 132 prosecutors have been re-trained;
- More than 500 victims of torture have undergone rehabilitation;
- Local and international advocacy courses have been conducted for 20 NGOs;
- More than 1,000 people have undergone training aimed at monitoring and preventing human rights abuses;
- Amendments have been made in 24 legal bills concerning legal aid, personal data protection, investigation and search operations and people with restricted abilities;
- Organizations such as Education and Monitoring Center for Human Rights, Accessible Environment for Everyone, Legal Researches Center, Social Protection League, Parents of Children Suffering from Nervous Diseases etc.
In 1994-2014, the foundation spent more than $80,000,000 on such important programs, as culture, human rights, supporting democratic elections, education and science, helping those who suffered from the August War, healthcare, media, technologies, supporting self-government and funding studies of students. The foundation spent the biggest part of the financial resources on education and public healthcare.
Prepared by Sopo Gelava