Who are Invited by Мади and Primakov Center?

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The Strategic Defense Review (SDR) document for 2017-2020 released by the Ministry of Defense of Georgia in April.2017 officially recognizes Russia’s soft power as the key challenge to the country’s security. The Russkiy Mir Foundation established on June 21, 2007 by decree of Russian President Vladimir Putin plays an important role in using the elements of soft power in Georgia. Besides popularization of the Russian language, the Foundation aims at spreading impartial information about modern Russia and forming favorable public opinion regarding Russia. To achieve these goals, the Foundation supports civil society organizations, professional associations and educational institutions involved in teaching the Russian language, literature and history in various countries, including Georgia.

The information about various opportunities to continue studies in Russia and attend free Russian language courses in Georgia is spread through pro-Kremlin media outlets. According to the statistical data published by the Coordination Council of Russian Compatriots in February 2021, 174 Georgian applicants expressed willingness to study in Russia in 2021-2022. Nikoloz Sventitsky, head of the Russian Club and the Coordination Council of Russian Compatriots, said that 120 places were allocated for Georgian students at Russian universities for the 2020 academic year. The state program fully covers tuition fees and provides accommodation for students. In addition, the Russian Interests Section at the Swiss Embassy in Tbilisi issues free visas to applicants and students willing to study in Russia.

Under the auspices of the Russian Government, the International Union of [Russian] Compatriots “Otchizna” and the federal agency Rossotrudnichestvo are also involved in the implementation of educational programs in Georgia. The World Coordinating Council of Russian Compatriots Living Abroad led by the Russian Foreign Ministry operates in 93 countries of the world. The list, however, involves Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent countries.

Presently, Georgia’s pro-Kremlin media outlets are spreading information about two educational projects. In February 2021, the Primakov Russian-Georgian Public Center announced enrollment in Russian language courses. Interested persons have an opportunity to learn spoken and business Russian language and familiarize themselves with Russian literature. Sputnik Georgia reports that free Russian language courses are carried out through collaboration between the Primakov Center and the Gorchakov Fund.

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In March, Georgia and World published information about an educational project being implemented under the auspices of the Russian government. According to this information, Moscow Automobile and Road Construction State Technical University (Мади) invites interested persons to study in Moscow and offers them accommodation and stipends. The information about receiving higher education in Russia was also published on the websites of the Coordination Council of Russian Compatriots and the Russian Club.

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Russian educational courses offered in Georgia in 2020-2021

Course

Organization

Who finances

Who publishes information 

Russian language courses

Primakov Russian-Georgian Public Center

Primakov Center in partnership with Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund

Sputnik Georgia

Competition “All roads lead to Мади!”

Moscow Automobile and Road Construction State Technical University

Educational costs will be covered from the state budget of the Russian Federation

Coordination Council of Russian Compatriots, ,Russian Club, Georgia and World

Media school for regional journalists and bloggers

TV channel RT

Sputnik Georgia

Russian educational projects and forums implemented in Georgia in 2013-2019 

Year

Project name

Who participated

Who financed

2019 (held three times)

Sputnik Pro’s training for journalists

Reporter, photographer Vera Kostamo and head of Sputnik–Georgia Oksana Vointseva

Sputnik news agency

2018

„Talking heads vs. experts: whom is the media hunting?“ and „Media and military-political processes in the Caucasus.”

Alexey Vishnevetsky, Deputy Chairman of the Russian Union of Journalists; Viktor Litovkin, head of TASS military news editorial office; Gennady Bordyugov, President of the International Council of the Association of Russian Society Researchers; Tato Laskhishvili, deputy head of Russia Today’s Georgian bureau; Alan Kasaev, editor-in-chief of newspaper „Северная Осетия“; Alexey Malashenko, Professor of Moscow State Institute of International Relations (МГИМО), political analyst

Russian center of political sciences „Север-Юг“, press club „Commonwealth“ and newspaper Georgia and World, with the support of the Russian Presidential Grant Foundation.

2018

“Public Diplomacy – Dialogue of Compromises”

The Union of Russian Youth of Georgia

With the support of the Gorchakov Fund

2017 წელი

Zakhar Vinogradov, project manager at media group Rossiya Segodnya (МИА “Россия сегодня”);
Vladimir Mamontov, director of Govorit Moskva radio station;Giorgi Saralidze,
anchor of Vesti FM radio station; Alexey Firsov, head of the center for social design “Platform”

Russian center of political sciences „Север-Юг“, the Intergovernmental Foundation for Educational, Scientific and Cultural Cooperation of the CIS (МФГС); press club “Commonwealth”; NGO “Historical Heritage”; newspaper Georgia and World

2016

Free Russian language learning courses

The Union of Russian Youth of Georgia

With the support of the Gorchakov Fund

2015

Vladimir Sungorkin, editor-in-chief of newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda; Yevgeny Satanovsky, President of the Institute of the Middle East; Kirill Privalov, commentator of Russian TV and Radio Broadcasting Company; Vitaly Leibin, editor-in-chief of Russky Reportior magazine

Georgia and World

2015

Media forum

Vladimir Mamontov, director of Govorit Moskva radio station

Organized by the editorial board of Georgia and World

2015

Russian language learning courses

Russian Corner

National Congress of Slav People of Georgia, with the support of Yelena Sutormina, member of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation; Russian Peace Foundation

2015

“Knowledge is the best bridge” Russian language courses 

Held upon initiative of the Society of Erekle II and with financial support of the Russkiy Mir Foundation.

2013

Training courses and master classes in using modern information technology and creating multimedia content

Journalists from RIA Novosti news agency, Radio Mayak, Russky Reportior magazine, Moskovskie Novosti newspaper, Vestnik Kavkaza information analytical portal

Organized by Russian center of political sciences „Север-Юг“, and non-commercial organization “Caucasian Cooperation.”

According to the research conducted by the Media Development Foundation in 2019, the educational/cultural activities carried out by Russkiy Mir Foundation mostly involve opportunities to receive education in the Russian higher education institutions, organization of free Russian language courses, cultural and literary evenings and conferences, publishing newspapers and magazines and other events.

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