Changing constitutional identity: Constitutional reform and new concept of human rights in Georgia


  • Dimitry Gegenava Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University



Constitution, Georgia, Constitutional Reform, Human Rights, Constitutional Identity


Constitutional reform of 2017 – 2018 amended the whole text of Georgian basic law, including the 2nd chapter – Basic Human Rights. Many articles and human rights were displaced to other chapters as general principles, some new and postmodern rights were added to the text. These changes are not only ordinary amendments; they make constitutional court and other state organs to realize their duties, and individuals to find new ways of protection of their rights. New constitutional regulation raises new forms and meanings, but this novation includes risks and perils, that should be discussed and analysed not only in the light of national constitutional law, but also in comparative and international context. This article describes main directions of amendments in the chapter on human rights and analyses perspectives, positive and negative aspects of them.


BABECK, W. Elaboration and Adoption of the Constitution in Georgia (1993-1995), 2nd Ed. Tbilisi : Iris, 2013.

Commentary to the Constitution of Georgia, Chapter 2, Citizenship, Basic Rights and Freedoms, Edited by P. Turava, Tbilisi, 2013.

FERNANDO, O. Conceptual Differences between the Civil Law System and the Common Law System. In Southwestern University Law Review. Vol.19, 1990.

GEGENAVA, D. Retrospection of the Constitutional Reforms of Georgia: In Search of the Holy Grail. In South Caucasus Law Journal, No.8 (2017).

GEGENAVA, D., JAVAKHISHVILI, P. Article 39 of the Constitution of Georgia: Internally Displaced Norm Pending the Shelter and the Phenomenon of Fear of the Unknown in Georgian Constitutionalism. In Academic Herald, Special Edition, 2017.

HART, H.L.A., Concept of Law, 2nd Ed. Clarendon Law Series, 1997.

Institute for Development of Freedom of Information, Assessment of the Proposed Constitutional Amendments, 27 April 2017; available at <> [10/08/2018].

JACOBSOHN, G. J. Constitutional Identity. Harvard University Press, 2010. DOI:

JOWELL, J. Review of Amendments to the Constitution of Georgia in Respect of Human Rights and Judiciary Matters, March 2017.

KÜNNECKE, M. Tradition and Change in Administrative Law. An Anglo-German Comparison. Berlin : Springer, 2007.

LENY, L.W. Origins of the Bill of Rights. New Haven, London : Yale University Press, 2001.

MCAFFEE, T.B., BYBEE, J.S., BRYANT, A.C. Powers Reserved for the People and the States: A History of the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, A Reference Guide to the United States Constitution. Westport, Connecticut, London : Praeger Publishers, 2006.

PUTKARADZE, N. Human Rights in the Constitution of 21 February of 1921. In Beginnings of Georgian Constitutionalism – 90 Years of the Constitution of 1921. Batumi, 2011.

TUGHUSHI, T., BURJANADZE, G., MSHVENIERADZE, G., GOTSIRIDZE, G., MENABDE, V. Human Rights and Case-Law of the Constitutional Court of Georgia. Tbilisi, 2013.

ZOIDZE, B. Constitutional Control and Order of Values in Georgia. Tbilisi, 2007.

Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany, 23 May 1949.

Constitution of Georgia, 24 August 1995.

Constitution of the Democratic Republic of Georgia, 21 February 1921.

Constitutional Law on “Amending Constitution of Georgia”, 13 October 2017.

Constitutional Law on “Amending Constitutional Law on Amending Constitution of Georgia”, 23 March 2018.

General Administrative Code of Georgia, 25 June 1999.

Civil Code of Georgia, 26 June 1997.

Explanatory Note on the Draft Constitutional Law on “Amendment to the Constitution of Georgia”; available at: <> [06.07.2018].

Judgment #1/7/727 of the Constitutional Court of Georgia on “Citizen of Georgia Giorgi Sekhniashvili v. Parliament of Georgia”, 21 April 2017.

Judgment #1/9/664 of the Constitutional Court of Georgia on “Non-Profitmaking Organization “Open Circle of Georgia” v. Parliament of Georgia”, 25 November 2016.

Opinion on the Draft Constitutional Amendments Adopted on 15 December 2017 at the Second Reading by Parliament of Georgia, Adopted by the Venice Commission, CDL-AD (2018) 005, Venice, 16-17 March 2018.

Opinion on the Draft Revised Constitution Adopted by the Parliament of Georgia at the Second Reading on 23 June 2017, Adopted by the Venice Commission, CDL-AD (2017) 023, Venice, 6-7 October 2017.

Recording Notice #2/2/416 of the Constitutional Court of Georgia on “Public Defender of Georgia v. Parliament of Georgia”, 29 May 2007.

Vallianatos and Others v. Greece. [ECtHR], App. nos. 29381/09 and 32684/09, 7 November 2013.




How to Cite

Gegenava, D. (2019). Changing constitutional identity: Constitutional reform and new concept of human rights in Georgia. Bratislava Law Review, 3(1), 112–121.