One year after the violent crackdown by Armenian police and security against supporters of defeated presidential candidate and former President Levon Ter-Petrossian in Yerevan, the political situation in Armenia remains polarized but, at least on the surface, stable.
Mikheil Saakashvili was reelected to a second term as president of Georgia in a controversial early election on January 5, 2008, just two months after police and security forces resorted to brute force to disperse participants in a weeklong peaceful demonstration in Tbilisi to protest his increasingly authoritarian policies and call for his resignation.
Within days of the start of full-scale hostilities last month between Georgia and Russia, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan floated the idea of a Caucasus stability pact modeled on a 1999 Balkan agreement.
Less than a week before the March 4 parliamentary elections in Georgia's unrecognized breakaway republic of Abkhazia, opposition candidates have accused President Sergei Bagapsh of interfering in the election process with the aim of ensuring the election of a parliament "loyal" to the present leadership.
Over the past 12 months, the three co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group that seeks to mediate a solution to the Karabakh conflict have warned repeatedly that upcoming elections in Armenia and Azerbaijan could scupper chances of reaching a peace settlement.
rmenia is due to hold parliamentary elections in 2007. Both Armenia and Azerbaijan will hold presidential elections in 2008.
President Mikheil Saakashvili's August 26 decision to bring forward the date of elections for local and municipal councils and mayors of major towns and cities has triggered a storm of protest from Georgian opposition parties, including those that earlier announced their intention to boycott that ballot.