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Police Brutality & Police Reform in Russia and the CIS - Articles (5)

Why does police reform appear to have been more successful in Georgia than in Kyrgyzstan or Russia?

Kornely Kakachia et Liam O’Shea

Résumé

Reform has been relatively successful in Georgia because, after the Rose Revolution, the new government used its dominance of the state to fire a huge number of officers, purge the old leadership, and instigate a crackdown on police corruption and links with organised crime. This took place in the background of a strong public demand for reform and a state-building process which dramatically reduced public sector corruption and altered state-society relations. In Kyrgyzstan and Russia, neither top-down nor bottom-up pressure has manifested itself into political pressure for reform. In the former, the state has been highly contested and powerful factions have competed to use it to extract resources for their own benefit and/or those of their constituents. In Russia, the state is more stable, but the leadership lacks the know-how or the willingness to implement meaningful reform. Instead of reform being imposed upon each country’s Ministry of Interior, reforms have been co-opted by elements within the ministries, with the result that they have been ineffective.

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Entrées d’index

Keywords :

Police, Corruption, Reform

Champs de recherche :

Political Science
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Notes de l’auteur

L. O’Shea’s contribution to this paper was made possible by a grant from the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council. He would also like to express thanks to three institutes which hosted and supported him during fieldwork conducted for this project: the Centre for Independent Social Research, St. Petersburg (Feb – Nov 2010), the Social Research Center, American University of Central Asia, Bishkek (April – May 2011), and the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies, Tbilisi (July – Sept 2011).

Texte intégral

1Police reform in Georgia is to be understood in the global context of the state building project undertaken by the new government, which came to power in the Rose Revolution of November 2003. The project aimed at increasing the capacity of the state and has been conducted by elites with a genuine interest in reducing low level corruption. Although the politicisation of the police and human rights abuses within the criminal justice system remain serious problems, the Georgian government has re-established the state’s political and economic control over the police by increasing police pay, removing most of the old regime’s personnel, and eliminating the influence of organised crime groups. A number of institutional measures were also introduced to address patrimonialism and systematic corruption, at low levels, such as competitive recruitment and centralised wage payments. By contrast, in Russia, although state capacity has enhanced the centre’s mechanisms of control over the police in recent years, this has not been used to tackle corruption or patrimonialism effectively at any level. This is because state and law enforcement remain dominated by officials who developed their careers during the late Soviet-era or post-Soviet eras, when state actors become increasingly corrupt and/or involved in organised crime. In contemporary Kyrgyzstan, as in pre-Revolution Georgia, and Russia until the 2000s, the central state has little capacity to influence police units and individual officers are often dependent on, and responsible to, corrupt elements within the police hierarchy, organised crime groups and/or local political figures.

  • 1 For a further discussion on the principles of democratic policing see: T. Jones, T. Newburn, and D. (...)

2This paper explains why the success of the Georgian police reform was dependent on state building and why such a process has not occurred in Kyrgyzstan or Russia. It does not focus primarily on why state building occurred in Georgia, although we allude to this, but, rather, on the formation and actions of a governing elite with the capacity and drive to tackle corruption. We define police reform somewhat restrictively, in order to compare it succinctly across the three cases, as a set of policies designed to alter police behaviour in order that they perform their duties equitably, deliver services effectively and efficiently, and that they are responsive to the wishes of the communities they police1. Primarily, state building resulted in police reform in Georgia because the personalities of the new elite were quick to assert their authority and were determined to tackle low level corruption. They also received a high degree of support from a reasonably homogenous population which identified with the Europeanisation aspects of reform. State building has not been possible in Kyrgyzstan because the state’s leadership has been too divided. In Russia, it has not resulted in effective reform because dominant political figures lack the ability and desire to drive reform of the police organisation.

An overview of police reform

  • 2 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, “Policing and Police Reform in Georgia”, in Organized (...)
  • 3 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, op. cit., pp. 94, 97.
  • 4 G. Slade, “The State on the Streets: The Changing Landscape of Policing in Georgia”, Caucasus Analy (...)
  • 5 Z. Krunic, and G. Siradze, The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia - Report on the Current Situ (...)

3After the Rose Revolution, the new government, led by Mikheil Saakashvili, inherited a fragmented and divided state in which corruption pervaded almost all state institutions. Under Eduard Shevardnadze, the old regime’s police functioned similar to an organised crime gang, extorting resources from the population, trafficking drugs and arms, and, somewhat sporadically, being used to defend the interests of the incumbent elites2. Reform began in earnest in July 2004 as part of a more general effort to assert the state’s monopoly of security functions from the control of the corrupted police leadership, official and unofficial regional political figures, including organised crime groups, and as part of its drive to combat corruption in public life. A large section of the police force was fired. It is difficult to estimate exact numbers because the pre-Revolution Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) did not keep accurate records. Overall, the new MIA was downsized from around 56,000 to 33,000, and around 16,000 police officers lost their jobs3. In 2011 the police numbered approximately 14,5004. In addition, major structural changes were implemented, the most important of which were the merger of the Ministry of State Security, the institutional successor to the KGB, into the MIA, the elimination of several redundant and/or duplicating functions (e.g. the ecology police), and the transfer of passport and citizen’s registration functions to the Ministry of Justice5.

  • 6 T. Gustafson, Capitalism Russian-Style, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge; New York, 1999; Cite (...)
  • 7 Interview with Boris Gladarev, Center for Independent Social Research, St. Petersburg, 15 September (...)
  • 8 M. Galeotti, “Medvedev’s Law on Police: A quiet revolution?”, openDemocracy, 1 March 2011, availabl (...)
  • 9 M. Galeotti, “The unshocking suspects”, The Moscow News, 23 April 2012, available at: http://themos (...)
  • 10 See: OSCE, OSCE Magazine October 2004, OSCE Secretariat, Vienna, 2004, available at: http://www.osc (...)
  • 11 Interview with Almaz Bazarbaev, Head of the Kyrgyz Police Academy, Bishkek, 7 May 2011. Interview w (...)

4Although a number of legal reforms were introduced in Russia after the collapse of the USSR, they failed to regulate police action and curtail police abuse or impunity6. According to one leading expert on Russian police, there was little serious attempt to reform the police until December 2009, when a more substantial police reform programme was announced7. The aim of these latest reforms has been to reduce the size of the police by around 20 per cent, increase salaries by 30 per cent, improve the quality of equipment, introduce new regulations governing police behaviour and change the name of the service from the Soviet-era “militsiya” to “police”8. It may be somewhat early to determine the outcome of police reform in Russia but the outlook is not promising. Whilst some of these changes are more than cosmetic, and may sow the seeds for more substantial reform, as Galeotti notes, since implementing the reform, the government has gone through a familiar routine of avoiding addressing structural problems. Instead, when faced with the several scandals that have emerged since 2011, the pattern has been for the government to deny a problem exists, present whistleblowers as alarmists or to look for scapegoats9. Despite some public pronouncements10, meaningful reform has not been undertaken in Kyrgyzstan. The police structure and many procedures remain basically as they were in the Soviet period11.

  • 12 G. Slade, “Georgia: Politics of punishment”, openDemocracy, 30 September 2012, available at: http:/ (...)
  • 13 T. De Waal, “Reform in Georgia - Carnegie Endowment for International Peace”, Carnegie Endowment fo (...)
  • 14 L. di Puppo, “Police Reform in Georgia. Cracks in an Anti-corruption Success Story”, Chr. Michelsen (...)
  • 15 T. De Waal, “Georgia’s Choices: Charting a Future in Uncertain Times”, Carnegie Endowment for Inter (...)

5Police reform in Georgia should only be considered a relative success because whereas the police now perform their duties more equitably, deliver services with better effectiveness and efficiency, and are responsive to some of the wishes of the communities they police, both they, and other criminal justice actors, fail to do so in a number of areas. The post-Revolution crack down against crime and corruption has resulted in a criminal justice system in which acquittals are almost impossible, the prisons are overcrowded and brutal12, and the MIA is the most powerful and hierarchical organ lacking transparency, with one prominent commentator arguing that Georgia has gone a long way toward looking like a benign police state13. Mirroring the government’s wider prioritisation of state building over democratisation, the police system has become tightly centralised and there is a lack of accountability to bodies or persons outside of the government14. The police are also perceived to be instruments of political control. During protests in 2007 and the closure of an independent television station, the police were widely criticised for their heavy-handedness and excessive violence15. Unfortunately, although these limitations are vitally important and worthy of attention, there is not space to discuss them in detail. The rest of this paper focuses on how and why reform in Georgia delivered a partial movement towards a more equitable, effective, and responsive police service, which, unlike the old regime’s police, or police in Kyrgyzstan or Russia, is no longer heavily involved in organised crime and systematic corruption on a large-scale.

State building and police reform

6The success of police reform is dependent upon state building because police tend to replicate the order set out by the state; they receive their authority from it, the state can recruit and promote those who mirror its normative stance and reject those who do not, it has substantial economic leverage over the police and, finally, it also has an important role in deciding police strategy and, often, operational and tactical choices. Police may deviate from the framework set out by the political authority but they tend to take their cues from it. As Hills notes,

  • 16 A. Hills, Policing Post-Conflict Cities, Zed Books, London; New York, 2009, p. 207.

“The reason is that police are content to be used; they rarely have an ideological stake in the political regime of their country… Typically, they are adjuncts to groups that control resources more directly.”16

  • 17 M. Mann, “The Autonomous Power of the State: Its Origins, Mechanisms, and Results”, in States in Hi (...)
  • 18 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 17.

7The effectiveness of reform depends on state capacity and state quality. State capacity is, “the capacity of the state…to penetrate civil society, and to implement logistically political decisions throughout the realm”17. State quality refers to the degree to which, “the state and its officials serve the interests of the population in a fair manner that promotes the general welfare”18.

  • 19 Gerber and Mendelson use the term solely to refer to the enrichment of police. T. P. Gerber and S. (...)
  • 20 This section borrows from Taylor’s distinction between patrimonial and rational-legal forms of gove (...)
  • 21 For example, see: L. Kosals, “Police in Russia: Reform or Business Restructuring?”, Russian Analyti (...)

8In the former Soviet Union (FSU), poor police performance can be explained by a combination of weak state capacity and poor state quality. Where the state has been weak, the influence of organised crime groups and police corruption have increased. By corruption we mean both predatory policing and police collaboration with organised criminal groups. Predatory policing is when police activities are devoted mainly to the material enrichment of the police themselves and political elites, rather than the protection of the public or elites.19 The newly independent states also inherited a poor quality policing model characterised by the politicisation of the police, human rights abuses, high levels of police corruption, and the predominance of patrimonial governance norms. The latter is a system of governance where access to state services and offices is not made according to “needs” or “what you know” but “who you know”20. After the Soviet Union collapsed, many of these characteristics were retained but access to police services (e.g. procuring a passport, ensuring a favourable outcome of criminal cases) and recruitment and promotion became increasingly marketised and corrupted21.

  • 22 M. S. Hinton and T. Newburn, Policing Developing Democracies, Routledge, London, New York, 2009, p. (...)
  • 23 The OECD has been particularly influential and its 2007 Handbook on Security System Reform, reitera (...)
  • 24 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 22. R. Egnell and P. Haldén, “Laudable, Ahistorical and Overambitious”, (...)
  • 25 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 11; M.S. Tanner, “Will the State Bring You Back In?”: Policing and Democ (...)

9It may seem obvious that the success of reform is contingent on that of state building but much of the policy-orientated security sector reform (SSR) literature, which dominates this field, ignores this key point. In general, there is a lack of scholarly understanding about policing systems in developing countries and their interaction with political environments22. SSR policy and its supporting literature tend to be ahistorical and apolitical, treating police reform as a technical issue23. SSR scholarship also largely ignores the literature on state formation24. Nevertheless, this works both ways, as there has been a notable neglect of law enforcement structures in the statist literature, and in comparative politics, more generally25.

Methodology and measuring police reform

10The three cases present an opportunity to examine the factors which influence police reform and were chosen for the following reasons. All three inherited the Soviet model of policing and experienced similar policing related problems in the post-Soviet period. Georgia was included because of the scope and publicised success of its police reform. Police reform in Russia provides an interesting comparison. In addition, most of the literature on police in the FSU, their history, and related topics, is written about Russia. Kyrgyzstan provides a third comparison and has been the most open environment in which to conduct police research in Central Asia.

  • 26 Kyrgyzstan (July – December 2008), Russia (Feb – November 2010), Kyrgyzstan (April – May 2011), Geo (...)

11A mixed methodological approach was used in an effort to explain patterns of reform. One of the authors is from the region and the other has spent time and conducted extensive fieldwork in each of the three countries26. Where available, quantitative data from a range of surveys is useful to determine the extent to which police behave equitably and the degree to which their actions engender support from the population. Quantitative measurements of police activity rarely capture the totality of policing however, nor do they explain why police behave as they do. Interviews and discussions were therefore conducted with over 70 informants, ranging from police, NGOs, and politicians, to taxi drivers and the staff of international organisations.

  • 27 European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, “Life in Transition After the Crisis”, 2011, pp. (...)

12There is substantial evidence to suggest reform has reduced police corruption and increased public trust in the police in Georgia whereas corruption and a lack of trust remain serious problems in Kyrgyzstan and Russia. One 2010 survey measured that over 40 per cent of respondents suspected the Kyrgyz road police of taking irregular payments, compared to 13 per cent in Russia and a negligible figure in Georgia. Approximately 30 per cent and less than 35 per cent of respondents had trust in the Russian and Kyrgyz police respectfully. By contrast, the Georgian police were trusted by over 70 per cent of respondents27. World Bank data indicate less interference by public officials (such as police) in business in Georgia, although they also highlight that corruption remains a problem in certain areas.

Figure - Data on corruption in Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Russia based on the Business Environment and Enterprise Performance Surveys (BEEPS) carried out by the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Figure  - Data on corruption in Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Russia based on the Business Environment and Enterprise Performance Surveys (BEEPS) carried out by the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Source: World Bank28

  • 29 In a survey conducted in 2010, in response to the question ‘how often do police make fair and impar (...)
  • 30 Levada Center, 2012, Rossiiane o politsii, available at: http://www.levada.ru/04-05-2012/rossiyane- (...)
  • 31 International Republican Institute, Survey of Kyrgyzstan Public Opinion (2010-2012), available at: (...)
  • 32 The exact question has changed over time but is broadly comparable – e.g. How do you feel about the (...)

13Individual country surveys report similar findings29. In 2012, the Levada Center found that 63 per cent of Russian respondents were somewhat fearful or definitely fearful of law enforcement agencies. In 2009 and 2010, the figures were 66 per cent and 67 per cent respectively30. Surveys conducted by the International Republican Institute (IRI) in Kyrgyzstan suggest police performance is widely regarded as poor. In 2012, 59 per cent of respondents had an unfavourable opinion of Kyrgyz law enforcement compared to 49 per cent in 2010 and 63 per cent in 201131. In Georgia, the IRI’s surveys indicate that, since the Rose Revolution, a large majority of Georgians have a favourable opinion of the performance of law enforcement agencies32.

Figure - Respondents’ opinion of Georgian law enforcement (2004 - 2012)

Figure  - Respondents’ opinion of Georgian law enforcement (2004 - 2012)
  • 33 International Republican Institute, Survey of Georgian Public Opinion (2004-2012), available at: ht (...)

Source: International Republican Institute33

14Other quantitative sources report similarly high levels of trust in Georgia34.

The political economy of police reform in Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Russia

  • 35 This section borrows from Volkov’s work on violence-management agencies. V. Volkov, Violent Entrepr (...)

15State building was key to police reform in Georgia because it allowed the new government to alter the political economy of policing and transform the police from a corrupted state agency with links to organised crime, to a state protection actor.35 This was achieved by three main processes: ending the practice of predatory policing; cracking down on organised crime and links between police and criminal groups; and by reducing patronage, particularly at the lower levels.

Predatory policing

  • 36 Interview, Praporshchik (most senior lower officer rank) (15 years service), GAI, Bishkek (May 2011
  • 37 J. Boda and K. Kakachia, “The Current Status of Police Reform in Georgia”, in From Revolution to Re (...)
  • 38 M. Devlin, “Seizing the Reform Moment: Rebuilding Georgia’s Police, 2004-2006”, Innovations for Suc (...)
  • 39 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, op cit., p. 99.
  • 40 Z. Krunic, and G. Siradze, op cit., p. 24.

16The system of predatory policing was broken in Georgia by creating a smaller, better paid police force and by replacing the vast majority of Shevardnadze-era personnel, thus destroying economic patronage links between the lower ranks and their superiors. Prior to the Revolution, the hierarchical system of police corruption functioned in much the same way as it does across the FSU, and can be summed by the following description provided by a Kyrgyz policeman, “The whole system is bad. I take from the taxi driver, my boss takes from me. He gives to the minister. The minister gives to the President”36. Increased state capacity enabled the Georgian government to centralise its economic control over the police. Pre-Revolution police were paid as little as $44-63 per month. The reduced size of the MIA combined with improved tax collection enabled the new government to increase wages by around nine-ten times37. Wage payments were paid into bank accounts rather than in cash to remove officers’ financial dependence upon their immediate superiors38. To ensure that enhanced central funding was actually spent on ordinary officers and police services and resources, the new elites instigated massive personnel changes to break the economic relational aspects of predatory policing. 83 per cent of police officers were dismissed outside of Tbilisi39 and replaced by personnel appointed from the centre. Personnel changes were not confined to the leadership of the new police. Only 15 per cent of the patrol police were retained40.

  • 41 M. Devlin, op cit., p. 7.
  • 42 M. Light, “Police Reform in the Republic of Georgia: The Convergence of Domestic and Foreign Policy (...)
  • 43 Interview, David Aprasidze, Tbilisi State University, Tbilisi (10 August 2011)

17The state also introduced a number of institutional reforms which removed opportunities for corruption. Rather than subordinates passing any fines or official moneys to their immediate superiors, a greater proportion of police-public interactions are now recorded and/or overseen by co-workers, managers, and/or personnel from other organisations or departments. Officers no longer directly handle money. Traffic fines are now issued by tickets and paid in banks or stations, rather than directly to officers41. The responsibility for issuing of passports and visas was transferred to the Ministry of Justice and responsibility for the issuing driving licences, and registering vehicles and weapons was handed to a new Service Agency, within the MIA. This united a number of police, customs and notary functions under one building which improved the ability of the state to provide effective oversight mechanisms over functions that were previously dispersed across several ministries and departments. Exam rooms within the Service Agency are equipped with video monitoring and recording systems and, additionally, driving licence exams have been part computerised42. Finally, functions which provided no social value but were an opportunity for state predation were abolished, such as vehicle inspection measures, which were regulated previously by the MIA. Under Shevardnadze, these failed to increase safety standards because bribery was widely used to receive the relevant certification. The new state could not afford to implement a new system but because the old one had no social value and so it was removed43. The new government also sent clear signals that petty corruption would be severely punished. The MIA broadcast its own television programme “Patrol” which featured night-time raids on the homes of officers recorded seeking bribes. Rumours even circulated that the MIA routinely bugged patrol cars. Even if these were without substance, their existence helped to affect a cultural change within the new police organisation.

  • 44 From the Russian: Ministerstvo vnutrennikh del
  • 45 B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 195.
  • 46 B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 195.
  • 47 F. Chapkovskii and E. Nagibinoi, “Militsiia degradirovala na moikh glazakh”, expert.ru, 20 November (...)
  • 48 B. Harasymiw, “President Medvedev’s Reform of the MVD: A Step Towards Democratic Policing in Russia (...)
  • 49 “Senior officer in secret police richest cop in Russia”, RIA Novosti, 2 May 2012, available at: htt (...)

18In Russia, predation has survived wage increases and may well continue despite recent increases because the interior ministry (the MVD)44 is still run by corrupt elements within the police and state leadership. Throughout the 1990s and much of the 2000s, predatory policing was partly attributable to police having been paid well below the average income. In 2003, a police colonel in St. Petersburg, with 25 years of service, earned $250-300 per month, MVD generals around $300, and a Moscow beat cop $172 (in 2004). In comparison, per capita GDP in Russia was around $4,000, in 200445. Police salaries have increased considerably since 2005, and doubled between 2005-200846. Wage increases announced in January 2012 saw some officers’ wages double again, and according to some figures the average wage of all ranks has risen from around $725 per month to $1,360 per month47. It is doubtful, however, that, for senior personnel, the new wage rises can compete with the income they receive from business opportunities and/or corruption. In 2011, the income of the Interior Minister was just over $100,000 but in May of that year it was reported that the MVD website had posted the incomes and property ownership of its senior officers, with one Viktor Grigorov earning an annual income of around $900,000. Another senior officer had an annual income of around $750,00048. No details were provided on the sources of these incomes, only adding to the suspicion that they resulted from nefarious practices49.

  • 50 M. Galeotti, “Medvedev’s police purge (1): the ministers”, In Moscow’s Shadows, 3 August 2011, avai (...)
  • 51 Historic rates, based on June 2011 conversion. http://fxtop.com/en/historates.php
  • 52 B. D. Taylor, op cit., 2011, pp. 269, 270.
  • 53 O. Nikishenkov, “Paying traffic fines – the easy way”, The Moscow News, 21 June 2010, available at: (...)

19Whereas in Georgia the state replaced the corrupt leadership of the MIA, no comparable steps have been taken in Russia. Recent reshuffles have seen a quite a change of personnel at the top of the MVD but many of these still come from within the MVD50 and under Putin, the MVD was led by Rashid Nurgaliyev (2003-2012), a KGB veteran. The failure to systematically replace the MVD leadership has limited the effectiveness of the 2009 reforms. Prior to becoming Interior Minister in May 2012, Vladimir Kolokoltsev himself told one Russian newspaper that corruption had infected the “vetting” process within the MVD. He reported rumours that an ordinary officer could secure a positive result from the attestation process by paying around $6,000 – $9,500 whereas a general’s position was available for a million dollars51. The MVD retains various functions which serve little purpose but to extort resources from the population, such as control over the issuing of visas, passports and driving licences52. There has been little reform of the fines system. Whilst some traffic fines can now be paid online or at banks they can still be paid by hand and many drivers prefer to do so because it is more convenient53. Thus, opportunities for predation remains open.

  • 54 E. Marat, 2006, The State-Crime Nexus in Central Asia: State Weakness, Organized Crime, and Corrupt (...)

20Predation remains a problem in Kyrgyzstan because of a lack of institutional reform but, more importantly, it is caused by low state capacity. In contrast to the Russia, central authorities have struggled to regain control over units of the Kyrgyz MVD from regional and institutional power brokers. According to a 2006 article by the then interior minister, starting from 2002, profits from the shadow economy exceeded those of the state budget54. The Kyrgyz central state therefore lacks any strong economic hold over police who receive most of their official and unofficial incomes from regional police and politicians (more on this below).

Police links with organised crime

  • 55 A. Kupatadze, Organized Crime, Political Transitions and State Formation in Post-Soviet Eurasia, Pa (...)
  • 56 See: G. Slade, “The Threat of the Thief: Who Has Normative Influence in Georgian Society?”, Global (...)
  • 57 A. Kupatadze, op cit., 2012, p. 127.
  • 58 A. Kupatadze, op cit., 2012, pp. 127–128

21The Georgian government’s anti-corruption drive undermined criminal groups’ control of economic activities, reasserted the state’s control over these, and cracked down on the links between criminals and police. Executive power was strengthened, enabling the regime to increase the country’s financial order and introduce tough anti-corruption and anti-crime legislation, albeit with little public oversight55. Legislation introduced in 2005 was modelled on US and Italian anti-organised crime laws, made being a thief-in-law, a criminal authority unique to the FSU56, illegal, enabled the state to confiscate property, and offered extensive protection to witnesses57. According to the Georgian Ministry of Justice, 173 professional criminals have been prosecuted and the influence of professional criminals has been curtailed by placing the most senior in a single prison, thus isolating them from criminal networks. The crackdown forced others to flee the country. Furthermore, over a billion dollars worth of property confiscated and some of the properties owned by criminals were even converted into police stations58.

  • 59 The Public Defender of Georgia, Report of the Public Defender on the Situation of Human Rights and (...)
  • 60 A. Kupatadze, 2012, op cit., p. 136.

22There is, however, some evidence to suggest that the continued use of state institutions for private purposes in Georgia. In 2006, the Georgian Ombudsman found that the Fiscal Police had abused their position of power during a dispute between an Agricultural Ministry wine company and an Italian firm, resulting in the destruction of some of the latter’s stock59. Kupatadze argues that this is not an isolated case and political links are frequently used against legitimate economic competition60. Nevertheless, state involvement in economic activity has declined considerably since the Rose Revolution.

  • 61 International Crisis Group, “The Pogroms in Kyrgyzstan”, 2010, pp. 5, 6, available at: http://www.c (...)

23Reform of the police organisation has been impossible in Kyrgyzstan because in addition to the state’s control of the police being low, the formal and informal leadership of police units have used them in a struggle for control of economic activities. The family of President Kurmanbek Bakiev (2005-2010), for example, is widely reputed to have utilised law enforcement agencies in the development of a large business empire controlling large swathes of the formal and informal economies, including the drugs trade61. In the 2000s, the links between organised crime groups and police were particularly notable, as reported by Kupatadze,

  • 62 A. Kupatadze, ‘Transitions After Transitions’: Coloured Revolutions and Organised Crime in Georgia, (...)

“Certainly, the infamous criminal leader from the Issyk-kul region, Rysbek Akmatvaev, was protected by the Minister of Internal Affairs, his cousin from the same tribe. Likewise Almaz Bokushev, the leader of the Karabaltinskaya group is also linked with another former Minister of the Interior who is now in political opposition to President Bakiev, and his brother was a member of the Jogorku Kenesh (Kyrgyz Parliament) from the Karabalta region.”62

  • 63 E. Marat, “Kyrgyzstan’s Fragmented Police and Armed Forces,” The Journal of Power Institutions in P (...)

24After Bakiyev was deposed, police in Osh, Kyrgyzstan’s second city in the south of the country, sided with the local major, Melis Myrzakhmatov, helping to resist attempts by the Provisional Government to remove him. Myrzakhmatov is reported to control most of the licit and illicit economic activity in Osh, including construction, bazaars, drugs trafficking and other types of smuggling, and the local police are widely regarded to be in his pay63.

  • 64 B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 164; A. V. Ledeneva, Russia’s Economy of Favours: Blat, Networking, and I (...)
  • 65 R. Kesby, “Why Russia Locks up so Many Entrepreneurs”, BBC, 5 July 2012, available at: http://www.b (...)
  • 66 V. Volkov, “The Selective Use of State Capacity in Russia’s Economy: Property Disputes and Enterpri (...)

25Although organised crime groups in Russia controlled a significant portion of the economy during the 1990s, from the mid-point of the decade onwards, actors from within the state hierarchy increased their influence vis-à-vis organised crime. However, the increase in state capacity has resulted in state security actors, including the police, usurping rather than countering organised crime. One Russian crime journalist estimates that if 70 per cent of protection rackets were provided by criminals in the 1990s, ten years later, 70 per cent were done so by police and 10 per cent by the FSB64. Security actors have been involved in corporate attacks, been hired to launch investigations and physical raids against business rivals, the selling of information and assets, and even directly in assassinations. Organised crime groups have gradually been pushed out by security actors hired to resolve commercial disputes and conflicts. According to Russia’s own ombudsman for business rights, in the last 10 years nearly three million entrepreneurs have been convicted, many of them unjustly65. Volkov sums up as follows, “The first step in reconstructing the state has been made: the bandit is gone; the state employee has taken his place. The second step – making him act as a state employee rather than a bandit – is still a problem”66.

Recruitment and promotion

  • 67 For a detailed discussed of patrimonialism within the pre-Revolution police see: S. Hensell, op cit (...)
  • 68 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, op cit., p. 100.
  • 69 Ibid.
  • 70 Interview, Detective (7 years service), Georgia (August 2011)

26The Georgian government implemented measures to counter corruption and patronage within the police system of recruitment and promotion67. Prior to the Revolution, cadets paid $4,000 – $6,000 to enter the Georgian Police Academy68. A complete reform was implemented in 2004-2005. Staff numbers were reduced from an excessive 650 to 150, wages raised, and an open, transparent examination process introduced69. It is difficult to determine the exact extent to which promotion is decided on a bureaucratic-rational rather than a patrimonial basis. One detective noted that both routes existed but he declined to go into the details of the latter70. At higher levels, there is a high degree of personal loyalty to incumbent politicians and promotion may be made on this basis. Nevertheless, all respondents questioned about patronage in Georgia remarked that police were no longer expected to pay ‘kick-backs’ to their superiors nor could positions be bought.

  • 71 A. Kuznetsov, “Fighting Corruption, Russian Style”, CBS News, 13 November 2009, available at: http: (...)
  • 72 Interview, Praporshchik (most senior lower officer rank) (15 years service), GAI, Bishkek (May 2011 (...)
  • 73 K. Musakeev, S. Salimbaev, and A. Subanbekov.
  • 74 T. Uzakbaev, “The Transitory Kyrgyz Militsia (Police): History, Challenges, Reforms”, Conference pa (...)
  • 75 A. Kupatadze, 2010, op cit., pp. 100, 189.

27In Russia, recruitment and promotion are widely reported to be made on the basis of corrupt practices. In 2006, one of the Russian MVD’s own researchers, Igor Groshev, conducted a survey at the MVD’s Tyumen Law Institute and found that only 3 per cent of cadets polled had never used bribes to enter the academy or pass exams and one third paid between $2,000 - $5,000 to pass the entrance exams. After publishing the results of the survey, Groshev was scapegoated and successfully sued by the Institute for defamation71. The Kyrgyz MVD remains dominated by patrimonial selection and promotion processes. A number of lower ranking officers indicated that financial ability was the main criteria in deciding promotion72. At a higher level, Tashtemir Aitbaev, on becoming Interior Minister in 2001, fired several prominent officials73 who had advanced through the MVD under the patronage of the previous minister, Omurbek Kutuev, with whom they shared a regional link. Aitbaev replaced them with men from his own clan/regional network74. Patrimonialism took a similar form during Bakiev’s presidency. One of Bakiev’s Interior Ministers, Bolotbek Nogoybaiev (2007-2008), for example, was a protégé of the premier’s brother75.

  • 76 L. O’Shea, “Informal Economic Practices Within the Kyrgyz Police (Militsiia)”, Forthcoming
  • 77 B. Gladarev, “Osnovnye printsipy i usloviia raboty militsii obshchestvennoi bezopaznosti,” in Milit (...)
  • 78 B. Gladarev, and S. Tsinman, “Povysilis’ li “migratsionnaia privlekatel’nost’” Rossia? Analiz vzaim (...)
  • 79 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., 2011, p. 214; M. Galeotti, “Medvedev’s Law on Police: A quiet revolution?”, (...)

28Patrimonial systems in both Kyrgyzstan and Russia have been reinforced by the strong influence superior officers have over the official wages of their immediate subordinates. In Kyrgyzstan, from tip to toe, the financial structures are highly personalised and the economic fortunes of subordinate officers are dependent on their superiors76. Until recently, in Russia, a similar system of hierarchical subordination existed. The employment and pay of ordinary officers was dependent on their immediate bosses, who were in turn dependent on district/city levels managers, who themselves were dependent on city administrators77. According to one study, 30-60 per cent of ordinary Russian officers’ monthly salaries were comprised of additional benefits, the payment of which is decided by immediate managers78. Under Putin/Medvedev the Kremlin began the process of centralising MVD funding it completed in the latest reforms79. This is likely to curtial the patrimonial power of local police officials, politicians and other powerful figures, but has not been accompanied by measures to systematically address patronage within the MVD hierarchy.

Why did state building result in police reform in Georgia? Why has this process not happened in Kyrgyzstan and Russia?

29The aforementioned measures were possible in Georgia because the Rose Revolution produced a leadership with the capacity and desire to tackle low level corruption and patrimonialism. No such political leadership has been forthcoming in Kyrgyzstan or Russia. The political and police leadership in both countries are dominated by personnel socialised by the corrupt and patrimonial norms which developed in the late-Soviet period and expanded after independence. Many elites also have little interest in meaningful reform because of profits gained from corruption.

Political capacity

  • 80 S. Jones, “The Rose Revolution: A Revolution Without Revolutionaries?”, Cambridge Review of Interna (...)
  • 81 L. Gurgenidze, “Georgia’s Search for Economic Liberty: A Blueprint for Reform in Developing Economi (...)
  • 82 M. Devlin, op. cit., p. 9.

30The post-Rose Revolution elite were adept at developing the capacity of the state in order to drive reform forward. In 2004 alone annual tax revenues increased 48 per cent and customs revenue multiplied five times80. From 2004-2008, tax revenue increased by 400 per cent whilst foreign direct investment increased by 12 per cent cumulatively81. Funding was also gathered from personal donations by figures such as George Soros and the Georgian tycoon Bidzina Ivanishvili and via the establishment of a Law Enforcement Development Fund (2004-2006) which directed some of the assets seized from former corrupt officials and organised criminals, albeit with limited transparency82. State capacity was enhanced by the relative political unity of the elites. Although the Georgian system is personalised around the president and there has been a high turnover of ministers, in comparison to before the Revolution, organised criminals and corrupt officials lacked the ability to seek protection from within the government, and play various political figures off each other.

  • 83 E. Marat, “Bishkek Sees Yet Another Political Assassination”, Eurasia Daily Monitor, Vol. 6, # 74, (...)
  • 84 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 73.

31Police reform in Kyrgyzstan has not been possible because political instability has meant that state capacity has been too low. The country has seen two presidents overthrown, in 2005 and 2010, and relations between political elites are bellicose, as evidenced by a wave of political assassinations in the 2000s83. In Russia, increases in state capacity have not been sufficient to improve police performance. Political stability and the strength of the Russian state are regarded as weak under Yeltsin (1991-1999) and strong under Putin (1999-2008) and Medvedev (2008-2012). According to Taylor, the increase in state capacity is attributable primarily to Putin’s overall popularity, a much stronger economy, and an ideological commitment to increasing the strength of the Russian state.84 This increase has allowed the state to increased wages which may serve to weaken police corruption and remaining links between police and organised crime groups. Nevertheless, without institutional reform of the organisational police culture these problems are likely to continue, and the police and state leadership have displayed an inability and unwillingness to instigate such changes (below).

Elite driven measures to curtail patrimonialism and corruption

  • 85 R. Bennet, “Delivering on the Hope of the Rose Revolution: Public Sector Reform in Georgia, 2004-20 (...)
  • 86 World Bank, Fighting Corruption in Public Services - Chronicling Georgia’s Reforms, op. cit.
  • 87 T. De Waal, “Georgia’s Choices: Charting a Future in Uncertain Times”, op. cit., p. 16.
  • 88 L. Mitchell, Uncertain Democracy: U.S. Foreign Policy and Georgia’s Rose Revolution, Univ. of Penns (...)
  • 89 Ibid.
  • 90 M. Lanskoy and G. Areshidze, op. cit.; World Bank, Fighting Corruption in Public Services - Chronic (...)

32Of the three cases, only in Georgia has the state leadership embarked on a systematic attempt to improve state quality by curtailing low level patrimonialism and corruption. The new leadership quickly committed itself to asserting its control over the public sector and introduced a series of neo-liberal-style reforms with the aim of creating a smaller, more effective state sector. In 2004/2005, for example, the number of ministries was reduced from 18 to 13 and approximately 40,000 civil servants were fired85. At the same time, routine procedures were altered or abolished to increase efficiency and eliminate opportunities for corruption. Increased computerisation limited personal contact between citizens and state officials and was introduced to facilitate the payment of salaries, services, fines and taxes86. These reforms have had some negative effects. The reduction in the size of the state had not been matched high levels of job creation and poverty remains high87. The scholarly consensus is that there has been more success in state building than in democratisation88. Constitutional changes have strengthened the presidency at the expense of parliament, and there remains a lack of transparency or engagement with actors outside of government, intolerance of the opposition and government intervention in the media89. Nevertheless, the government has used its executive power to drive reform of the wider public sector and has achieved notable successes including the provision of a stable supply of electricity, the establishment of new communication networks and infrastructure projects, and reform of the education system90.

  • 91 M. Light, op. cit.
  • 92 G. Nodia and A. Pinto Scholtbach, The Political Landscape of Georgia Political Parties: Achievement (...)

33There are a number of instrumental and ideological reasons behind the new elite’s vigorous pursuit of reform. According to Light, the primary factors were the major security threats to the state’s survival, stemming from Russia and, internally, state weakness caused by organised crime, corruption and territorial secession, and in consequence, there was a convergence of elite and mass opinion on the need to attack law enforcement corruption91. Police reform was also used to solidify the new government’s domestic position and it was certainly a very visible symbol of reform which provided the elite with an opportunity to present Georgia as moving towards a modern, market-oriented democracy and kind of sui generis phenomenon in the post-Soviet space. But the new elites also had a considerably different conception of the state compared to their predecessors and the leaderships of other post-Soviet countries. The majority were young and a significant number had spent time in Western universities or working for Western NGOs. Saakashvili was only thirty-seven when he was elected President and many of his ministers were around or under thirty92. They were less integrated into patronage/corruption networks and less socialised into formal and informal Soviet-style governance practices. Although continued patronage and forms of corruption at high level suggest some continuation with the previous regime, an alternative, Western-inspired vision of the state has helped to inspire a series of reforms to tackle low-level patrimonialism and corruption.

  • 93 A. Levchenko, “Akaev’s Family Under FBI Investigation”, Times of Central Asia, 9 November 2006; Cit (...)
  • 94 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 166.
  • 95 Y. Gilinskiy, “Militsiia — Eto Organizovannaia Prestupnaia Gruppirovka,” Delovoi Peterburg, 6 Aug 2 (...)

34In Kyrgyzstan and Russia, the groups that control resources have been deeply implicated in corruption and there has been little incentive to introduce effective anti-corruption measures. In the former, political leaders have lacked political capacity but also the desire to reduce corruption. In addition to the Bakiev family’s nepotism, the family of the country’s first president, Askar Akaev, utilised state assets, including law enforcement structures, to gain control over formal and informal sectors of the economy. One economist estimates that the Akaev family amassed between $500 million and $1 billion over its fourteen years in power93. In Russia, as discussed above, there is evidence to suggest a relatively high degree of elite complicity in corruption. State organisations, including law enforcement bodies, have also demonstrated a resistance to reforms that would harm their commercial opportunities. A 2002 change to the Criminal Code, which meant that only procurators could initiate criminal proceedings, was heavily resisted by the police, and overturned in 2007. The police line was that this created an unnecessary burden but other observers attributed this resistance to the police losing their ability to pressure businesses94. When political leaders are actively using police organisations for economic and political ends, meaningful reform is impossible. As one prominent Russian criminologist states, “[You could] increase the police salary by 10 times and nothing will change! The sum of bribes will change. The system is rotten through”95.

  • 96 C. H. Fairbanks, “Clientalism and the Roots of Post-Soviet Disorder”, in Transcaucasia, Nationalism (...)
  • 97 P. Jones Luong, Institutional Change and Political Continuity in Post-Soviet Central Asia: Power, P (...)
  • 98 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., pp. 57–70. For example, both of Putin’s interior ministers, Boris Gryzlov ( (...)
  • 99 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 57.
  • 100 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 62.

35Patrimonialism has also remained a prominent feature of policing in Kyrgyzstan and Russia because the politically influential figures who have dominated institutions developed their management styles and coping mechanisms during the patrimonial Soviet era and/or the kleptocratic post-Soviet era. Both nepotism and patrimonialism have their roots in the Soviet system. The randomness of Soviet law meant it was more precipitous to seek security via relationships than by recourse to state authorities, whilst the impossible demands of central government imposed unrealistic targets and crushing punishments, thus requiring officials to violate rules and protect themselves from the consequences. In the absence of an impartial and professional civil service, favouritism in public service evolved and expanded96. Although Akaev’s background was in the Soviet Academy, rather than political or security institutions, under his presidency key political positions were dominated by Soviet-era officials97. For example, Aitbaev, one of Akaev’s interior ministers, was an ex-KGB officer, as was Kubatbek Baibalov, who held office under Bakiev (Interior Minister, July – September 2010). Politics in Russia is less fractured but is dominated by a cohort of men with a background in the power ministries, known as the siloviki. Taylor describes in great detail, the series of links between top officials of the FSB, MVD, Presidential Administration and Procurator, and so on, many of whom were advanced under Putin because they shared a connection from his background working for the KGB and in St. Petersburg98. The extent, coherence, homogeneity, and significance of the siloviki is debated99, but their increased influence is clear and the institutional culture of this group emphasises order, control, discipline and the primacy of the state over liberal and democratic values100. Thus, regardless of involvement in predatory policing or organised crime, the political elite in each country operates on the basis of organisational cultures where recruitment and, especially promotion, are determined by adherence to principles such as personal loyalty and discipline rather than the performance of ones’ duties according to the principles of some sort of democratic governance.

Popular pressure from below

  • 101 S. Jones, 2003. “The Role of Cultural Paradigms in Georgian Foreign Policy”, Journal of Communist S (...)
  • 102 S. Jones, op. cit., 2006, p. 34.

36In Georgia, the likelihood that elites would emerge supporting police reform on Western models and that it would be supported by large sections of the population were increased because the aspiration to establish Western-style institutions is rooted widely within the fabric of political and cultural life in Georgia. The first point is more ambiguous. According to Jones, common values in Georgia based on pro-Western sentiment, identity as a Christian nation, ambiguity towards Russia, and a vague sense of regional identity provide a context for political decisions and help explain the choices made by the country’s foreign policy elite101. The successful emergence of a reforming group of elites may therefore in part be attributed to the long-term development of political culture within Georgia, although this was certainly not a determining factor in itself. In an earlier piece Jones also notes that the seizure of power by new elites was unexpected and that Shevardnadze could have retained power if he had used his political acumen more effectively, a view shared by at least one prominent leader of the Revolution102.

37Less ambiguously, Georgian nationalism played an important role in helping the elites to consolidate the police reform. Paradoxically, in Georgia’s recent history, the manipulation of Georgian identity was a substantial barrier to reform. Through the 1990s police reform was impossible because of political instability, in part driven by differing conceptions of the Georgian state. Georgian and minority nationalisms contributed to the secession of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The Georgian population has also historically exhibited an identity ambivalent to state authority, as is often characteristic of colonised nations. Various forms of corruption, exploiting the state for individual/familial gain, were not often considered crimes but, on the contrary, legitimate and even proper, to the extent that, in 1993, 25 per cent of schoolchildren interviewed in Georgia said they wanted to be a thief-in-law when they grew up. In 2003 however, the unifying aspects of nationalism and identity enhanced the political capacity required for reform. In the first place, endemic corruption, high levels of poverty, a stagnating economy, and a dysfunctional democratic system discredited the old elites and opponents of reform, and it enhanced the legitimacy of the reformers. Also, by 2003 many of the ethnic minorities who could well have resisted police reform and/or state building lived outside of central government control.

  • 103 S. Radnitz, “Networks, Localism and Mobilization in Aksy, Kyrgyzstan”, Central Asian Survey, Vol. 2 (...)
  • 104 S. White, “Elections Russian-Style”, Europe-Asia Studies, Vol. 63, # 4, 2011, p. 533.
  • 105 Y. Zarakhovich, “Police Supermarket Killings in Moscow Reveals Deeper Problems”, Eurasia Daily Moni (...)

38In Kyrgyzstan, the emergence of an elite with the capacity, let alone the vision, to implement reform is hindered because elite and popular political culture remain fractured along various lines, which mobilise along diverse clan, family, regional, state and criminal networks103. Whilst successful anti-corruption policies would in all probability be welcomed by the vast majority of the population, the country, at present, lacks a shared vision of the state around which a set of reformers could drive reform. In Russia, similarly, there is no reason to suggest that reforms similar to those implemented in Georgia would be met with popular resistance. The main barrier to reform is not state weakness but the incumbent elites. Whilst the ruling United Russia party remain popular with large sections of the population it is also capable of dominating elections by fair and unfair means104. Prominent cases of police corruption and brutality are widely reported105, but at present Russia lacks a political opposition which can convert public outrage into political gains and a degree of political openness which would potentially allow it to do so.

Conclusion

39The success of the Georgian police reform stems from the nature of the state building project launched in 2003, which increased the state’s capacity and was conducted with an anti-corruption ethos. By consolidating power, the new government was able to purge the police of corrupted elements and remove the external corrupting influence of organised crime groups and bureaucratic patrons. The efficiency of the state building project and its anti-corruption ethos were possible primarily due to combination of willing and capable elites, supported by a Western-looking, relatively homogeneous population. Kyrgyzstan has lacked state capacity and a desire amongst political leaders to create a police that serves the state, rather than particular interests. In Russia, state capacity has improved, but the continuation of a relatively high level of police activity in informal economic activity, links with organised crime groups, and Soviet-style neo-patronage are significant challenges to meaningful reform. Recent pay increases and the centralisation of wages may lessen the negative impact of these over time but it is difficult to see how structural corruption can be curtailed without institutional reform and a replacement of elites at the echelons of the policing system.

40The Georgian police is still afflicted by a number of serious problems however, one of the most important of which is the level of politicisation around a small group of personalities. At the time of writing, Saakashvili conceded defeat in the 2012 parliamentary election which were seen as a positive step towards Georgia’s consolidation as a democracy. Yet many in the police owe a lot to personalities within the Saakashvili administration, which itself has proven more capable at strengthening state capacity than it has democratic institutions. If the Georgian political arena develops into a more fractious form than its current state it is unclear whether policing in Georgia has the instruments in place to ensure the police can impartially manage future political disputes and economic conflicts. For the majority of Georgians, this politicised police is still an improvement on the corrupted institution which existed before the Rose Revolution and the routine predation they were likely to experience. Unlike Russia and Kyrgyzstan, Georgia does not suffer from petty corruption or police on the streets behaving like bandits. Nevertheless, the politicisation of the police raises does raise questions concerning the irreversibility of the police reform.

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Notes

1 For a further discussion on the principles of democratic policing see: T. Jones, T. Newburn, and D. J. Smith, “Policing and the Idea of Democracy,” British Journal of Criminology, Vol. 36, # 2, 1996, pp. 190–193.

2 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, “Policing and Police Reform in Georgia”, in Organized Crime and Corruption in Georgia, L. Shelley, E. R. Scott, and A. Latta (Eds), Routledge, 2006, p. 94; S. Hensell, “The Patrimonial Logic of the Police in Eastern Europe,” Europe-Asia Studies, Vol. 64, # 5, 2012, pp. 826, 827.

3 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, op. cit., pp. 94, 97.

4 G. Slade, “The State on the Streets: The Changing Landscape of Policing in Georgia”, Caucasus Analytical Digest, # 26, 2011, p. 7, available at: http://dwvg.ge/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/CaucasusAnalyticalDigest26.pdf.

5 Z. Krunic, and G. Siradze, The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia - Report on the Current Situation with the Recommendations for the Reform, Report for the European Commission, Tbilisi, 2005, p. 55, available at: http://www.docstoc.com/docs/35269073/REPORT-ON-THE-CURRENT-SITUATION-OF-THE-MINISTRY-OF-INTERNAL.

6 T. Gustafson, Capitalism Russian-Style, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge; New York, 1999; Cited in: A. Beck and A. Robertson, “Policing in Post-Soviet Russia”, in Ruling Russia: Law, Crime, and Justice in a Changing Society, W. A. Pridemore (Ed.), Rowman & Littlefield, 2005.

7 Interview with Boris Gladarev, Center for Independent Social Research, St. Petersburg, 15 September 2010.

8 M. Galeotti, “Medvedev’s Law on Police: A quiet revolution?”, openDemocracy, 1 March 2011, available at: http://www.opendemocracy.net/od-russia/mark-galeotti/medvedev%E2%80%99s-law-on-police-quiet-revolution.

9 M. Galeotti, “The unshocking suspects”, The Moscow News, 23 April 2012, available at: http://themoscownews.com/siloviks_scoundrels/20120423/189659763.html.

10 See: OSCE, OSCE Magazine October 2004, OSCE Secretariat, Vienna, 2004, available at: http://www.osce.org/secretariat/13679

11 Interview with Almaz Bazarbaev, Head of the Kyrgyz Police Academy, Bishkek, 7 May 2011. Interview with Kubatbek Baibolov, former Interior Minister (July – September 2010), Bishkek, 23 May 2011; Interview with a Captain, Department of Social Order, 20 years, Bishkek, May 2011.

12 G. Slade, “Georgia: Politics of punishment”, openDemocracy, 30 September 2012, available at: http://www.opendemocracy.net/gavin-slade/georgia-politics-of-punishment; for a comparison of Georgia’s prison population with other European countries, see: International Centre for Prison Studies, Europe - Prison Population Total, available at: http://www.prisonstudies.org/info/worldbrief/wpb_stats.php?area=europe&category=wb_poptotal

13 T. De Waal, “Reform in Georgia - Carnegie Endowment for International Peace”, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 20 June 2011, available at: http://www.carnegieendowment.org/2011/06/20/reform-in-georgia/1s0.

14 L. di Puppo, “Police Reform in Georgia. Cracks in an Anti-corruption Success Story”, Chr. Michelsen Institute-U4, Bergen, Norway, 2010, available at: http://www.u4.no/document/publication.cfm?3748=police-reform-in-georgia.

15 T. De Waal, “Georgia’s Choices: Charting a Future in Uncertain Times”, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 2011, pp. 6,7, available at: http://www.carnegieendowment.org/files/georgias_choices.pdf; G. Slade, “Georgia’s War on Crime: Creating Security in a Post-Revolutionary Context”, European Security, Vol.21, # 1, 2012, p. 51; S.E. Cornell, J. Popjanevski, and N. Nilsson, Learning from Georgia’s Crisis: Implications and Recommendations, Johns Hopkins University-SAIS, Washington D.C., 2007, p. 10–12, 16.

16 A. Hills, Policing Post-Conflict Cities, Zed Books, London; New York, 2009, p. 207.

17 M. Mann, “The Autonomous Power of the State: Its Origins, Mechanisms, and Results”, in States in History, John A. Hall (Ed.), Blackwell, 1986, p. 113; cited in: B. D. Taylor, State Building in Putin’s Russia: Policing and Coercion After Communism, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2011, p. 16.

18 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 17.

19 Gerber and Mendelson use the term solely to refer to the enrichment of police. T. P. Gerber and S. E. Mendelson, “Public Experiences of Police Violence and Corruption in Contemporary Russia: A Case of Predatory Policing?”, Law & Society Review, Vol. 42, 2008, p. 2.

20 This section borrows from Taylor’s distinction between patrimonial and rational-legal forms of governance. B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 27.

21 For example, see: L. Kosals, “Police in Russia: Reform or Business Restructuring?”, Russian Analytical Digest, # 84, 2010, p. 3, available at: http://www.css.ethz.ch/publications/pdfs/RAD-84.pdf.

22 M. S. Hinton and T. Newburn, Policing Developing Democracies, Routledge, London, New York, 2009, p. 3; A. Hills, op. cit., pp. 19–22.

23 The OECD has been particularly influential and its 2007 Handbook on Security System Reform, reiterates the defining principles of SSR and attempts to provide ‘lessons learned’ from previous SSR projects and practical guidelines for policymakers and practitioners. OECD, The OECD DAC Handbook on Security System Reform: Supporting Security and Justice, OECD, Paris, 2007, p. 21. For a critique of SSR see: G. Peake, “A Lot of Talk But Not a Lot of Action: The Difficulty of Implementing SSR in Timor-Leste”, in Security Sector Reform in Challenging Environments, H. Born and A. Schnabel (Eds.), Lit Verlag, Berlin, 2010, p. 214; M. Caparini, “Civil Society and the Future of Security Sector Reform”, in The Future of Security Sector Reform, M. Sedra (Ed.), Centre for International Governance Innovation, Ontario, 2010, p. 248.

24 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 22. R. Egnell and P. Haldén, “Laudable, Ahistorical and Overambitious”, Conflict, Security & Development, Vol. 9, 2009.

25 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 11; M.S. Tanner, “Will the State Bring You Back In?”: Policing and Democratization (Review Article)”, Comparative Politics, Vol. 33, 2000, pp. 101–124; Cited in: B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 11.

26 Kyrgyzstan (July – December 2008), Russia (Feb – November 2010), Kyrgyzstan (April – May 2011), Georgia (July – August 2011).

27 European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, “Life in Transition After the Crisis”, 2011, pp. 77, 83, 99, available at: http://www.ebrd.com/downloads/research/surveys/LiTS2e_web.pdf.

28 World Bank, Enterprise Surveys - What Businesses Experience, 2012, available at: http://www.enterprisesurveys.org.

29 In a survey conducted in 2010, in response to the question ‘how often do police make fair and impartial decisions?’ over 60 per cent of Russian respondents answered not at all or not very often. By contrast, a 2007 survey in Georgia found 65 per cent of respondents had a favourable opinion of the police. J. Jackson et al., “Trust in Justice: Topline Results from Round 5 of the European Social Survey”, European Social Survey, 2011, available at: http://www.europeansocialsurvey.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=903&Itemid=80; International Republican Institute, Baltic Surveys Ltd./The Gallup Organization, and The Institute of Polling and Marketing, “Georgian National Voter Study”, 2007, available at: http://www.iri.org/sites/default/files/2007%20November%208%20Survey%20of%20Georgian%20Public%20Opinion,%20August%2031-September%2010,%202007.pdf. See also: T.P. Gerber and S. E. Mendelson, op cit.

30 Levada Center, 2012, Rossiiane o politsii, available at: http://www.levada.ru/04-05-2012/rossiyane-o-politsii.

31 International Republican Institute, Survey of Kyrgyzstan Public Opinion (2010-2012), available at: http://www.iri.org/explore-our-resources/public-opinion-research/public-opinion-polls

32 The exact question has changed over time but is broadly comparable – e.g. How do you feel about the work of the following institutions? (2012) What is your opinion about the work of each of these institutions? (2009)

33 International Republican Institute, Survey of Georgian Public Opinion (2004-2012), available at: http://www.iri.org/explore-our-resources/public-opinion-research/public-opinion-polls.

34 Caucasus Research Resource Centers, Caucasus Barometer (2008-2011), available at: http://www.crrccenters.org/caucasusbarometer/.

35 This section borrows from Volkov’s work on violence-management agencies. V. Volkov, Violent Entrepreneurs: The Use of Force in the Making of Russian Capitalism, Cornell University Press, Ithaca, 2002, p. 108.

36 Interview, Praporshchik (most senior lower officer rank) (15 years service), GAI, Bishkek (May 2011)

37 J. Boda and K. Kakachia, “The Current Status of Police Reform in Georgia”, in From Revolution to Reform: Georgia’s Struggle with Democratic Institution Building and Security Sector Reform, Ph. Fluri and E. Cole (Eds.), DCAF, 2005, pp. 2, 3, available at: http://www.dcaf.ch/Chapter-Section/12-The-Current-Status-of-Police-Reform-in-Georgia

38 M. Devlin, “Seizing the Reform Moment: Rebuilding Georgia’s Police, 2004-2006”, Innovations for Successful Societies, 2009, p. 7, available at: http://www.princeton.edu/successfulsocieties/content/focusareas/PL/policynotes/view.xml?id=126.

39 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, op cit., p. 99.

40 Z. Krunic, and G. Siradze, op cit., p. 24.

41 M. Devlin, op cit., p. 7.

42 M. Light, “Police Reform in the Republic of Georgia: The Convergence of Domestic and Foreign Policy in an Anti-Corruption Drive”, Forthcoming; World Bank, Fighting Corruption in Public Services - Chronicling Georgia’s Reforms, World Bank, Washington D.C., 2012, pp. 18, 19.

43 Interview, David Aprasidze, Tbilisi State University, Tbilisi (10 August 2011)

44 From the Russian: Ministerstvo vnutrennikh del

45 B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 195.

46 B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 195.

47 F. Chapkovskii and E. Nagibinoi, “Militsiia degradirovala na moikh glazakh”, expert.ru, 20 November 2011, available at: http://expert.ru/russian_reporter/2011/41/militsiya-degradirovala-namoih-glazah/.

48 B. Harasymiw, “President Medvedev’s Reform of the MVD: A Step Towards Democratic Policing in Russia?”, 84th Annual Conference of the Canadian Political Science Association. University of Alberta, 2012, p. 17, available at: http://www.cpsa-acsp.ca/papers-2012/Harasymiw.pdf.

49 “Senior officer in secret police richest cop in Russia”, RIA Novosti, 2 May 2012, available at: http://en.rian.ru/society/20120502/173166313.html.

50 M. Galeotti, “Medvedev’s police purge (1): the ministers”, In Moscow’s Shadows, 3 August 2011, available at: http://inmoscowsshadows.wordpress.com/2011/08/03/medvedev%e2%80%99s-police-purge-1-the-ministers/; M. Galeotti, “Kolokoltsev’s reshuffle of the MVD”, In Moscow’s Shadows, 16 June 2012, available at: http://inmoscowsshadows.wordpress.com/2012/06/16/kolokoltsevs-reshuffle-of-the-mvd/.

51 Historic rates, based on June 2011 conversion. http://fxtop.com/en/historates.php

52 B. D. Taylor, op cit., 2011, pp. 269, 270.

53 O. Nikishenkov, “Paying traffic fines – the easy way”, The Moscow News, 21 June 2010, available at: http://themoscownews.com/business/20100621/187886661.html.

54 E. Marat, 2006, The State-Crime Nexus in Central Asia: State Weakness, Organized Crime, and Corruption in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, Johns Hopkins University-SAIS, Washington D.C., 2006, p. 100.

55 A. Kupatadze, Organized Crime, Political Transitions and State Formation in Post-Soviet Eurasia, Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, Hampshire; New York, 2012, p. 130.

56 See: G. Slade, “The Threat of the Thief: Who Has Normative Influence in Georgian Society?”, Global Crime, Vol. 8, #2, 2007; G. Slade, “Georgia’s War on Crime: Creating Security in a Post-Revolutionary Context,” European Security, Vol. 21, #1, 2012, pp. 37–56.

57 A. Kupatadze, op cit., 2012, p. 127.

58 A. Kupatadze, op cit., 2012, pp. 127–128

59 The Public Defender of Georgia, Report of the Public Defender on the Situation of Human Rights and Freedoms in Georgia, 2006, pp. 121–124, available at: http://www.osce.org/odihr/27769.

60 A. Kupatadze, 2012, op cit., p. 136.

61 International Crisis Group, “The Pogroms in Kyrgyzstan”, 2010, pp. 5, 6, available at: http://www.crisisgroup.org/en/regions/asia/central-asia/kyrgyzstan/193-the-pogroms-in-kyrgyzstan.aspx; A. Kupatadze, 2012, op cit., pp. 148–151; E. Marat and D. Isa, “Kyrgyzstan Relaxes Control Over Drug Trafficking”, Eurasia Daily Monitor, Vol. 7, #24, 2010, available at: http://www.jamestown.org/single/?no_cache=1&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=36013

62 A. Kupatadze, ‘Transitions After Transitions’: Coloured Revolutions and Organised Crime in Georgia, Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan”, PhD Thesis, University of St. Andrews, 2010, p. 69, available at: http://research-repository.st-andrews.ac.uk/handle/10023/1320.

63 E. Marat, “Kyrgyzstan’s Fragmented Police and Armed Forces,” The Journal of Power Institutions in Post-Soviet Societies, Vol. 11, 2010, p. 4, available at: http://pipss.revues.org/3803.

64 B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 164; A. V. Ledeneva, Russia’s Economy of Favours: Blat, Networking, and Informal Exchange, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1998, p. 192.

65 R. Kesby, “Why Russia Locks up so Many Entrepreneurs”, BBC, 5 July 2012, available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18706597.

66 V. Volkov, “The Selective Use of State Capacity in Russia’s Economy: Property Disputes and Enterprise Takeovers After 2000”, PONARS Policy Memo, 273, 2002, p. 1; Cited in: B. D. Taylor, op cit., p. 77.

67 For a detailed discussed of patrimonialism within the pre-Revolution police see: S. Hensell, op cit., pp. 822–827.

68 A. Kupatadze, G. Siradze, and G. Mitagvaria, op cit., p. 100.

69 Ibid.

70 Interview, Detective (7 years service), Georgia (August 2011)

71 A. Kuznetsov, “Fighting Corruption, Russian Style”, CBS News, 13 November 2009, available at: http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-202_162-5179949.html; A. Kurochkin, “Sotsiologiia Dlia Militsii ne Nauka – Proisshestviia”, infox.ru, 9 June 2009, available at: http://infox.ru/accident/incident/2009/07/09/Tyumyenskiy_sud_priz.phtml.

72 Interview, Praporshchik (most senior lower officer rank) (15 years service), GAI, Bishkek (May 2011); Interview, Captain (20 years service), Department of Social Order, Bishkek (May 2011); Interview, Captain (20 years service), Department of Social Order, Bishkek (May 2011); Interview, Zulfia Kochorbaeva, Social Technology Agency (NGO), Bishkek (15 May 2011); Interview, OSCE official, Kyrgyzstan (May 2011)

73 K. Musakeev, S. Salimbaev, and A. Subanbekov.

74 T. Uzakbaev, “The Transitory Kyrgyz Militsia (Police): History, Challenges, Reforms”, Conference paper presented at the ESCAS XI Conference 2009, Central European University, Budapest, Hungary, 3-5 September 2009, pp. 14, 15.

75 A. Kupatadze, 2010, op cit., pp. 100, 189.

76 L. O’Shea, “Informal Economic Practices Within the Kyrgyz Police (Militsiia)”, Forthcoming

77 B. Gladarev, “Osnovnye printsipy i usloviia raboty militsii obshchestvennoi bezopaznosti,” in Militsiia i Etnicheskie Migranti: Praktiki i Vzaimodeistviia, ed. V. Voronkova, B. Gladarev, and L. Sagitovoi, Aletheia, 2010, p. 104–105.

78 B. Gladarev, and S. Tsinman, “Povysilis’ li “migratsionnaia privlekatel’nost’” Rossia? Analiz vzaimodeistviia sotrudnikov militsii i FMC s migrantami posle izmenenii migratsionnovo zakonodatel’stva”, in V. Voronkova, B. Gladarev, and L. Sagitovoi, op. cit., p. 504.

79 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., 2011, p. 214; M. Galeotti, “Medvedev’s Law on Police: A quiet revolution?”, op. cit.

80 S. Jones, “The Rose Revolution: A Revolution Without Revolutionaries?”, Cambridge Review of International Affairs, Vol. 19, # 1, 2006, p. 46.

81 L. Gurgenidze, “Georgia’s Search for Economic Liberty: A Blueprint for Reform in Developing Economies”, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, 2009, available at: http://www.aei.org/outlook/foreign-and-defense-policy/regional/europe/georgias-search-for-economic-liberty.

82 M. Devlin, op. cit., p. 9.

83 E. Marat, “Bishkek Sees Yet Another Political Assassination”, Eurasia Daily Monitor, Vol. 6, # 74, 2009, available at: http://www.jamestown.org/single/?no_cache=1&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=34873.

84 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 73.

85 R. Bennet, “Delivering on the Hope of the Rose Revolution: Public Sector Reform in Georgia, 2004-2009”, Innovations for Successful Societies, 2011, pp. 7, 8, available at: http://www.princeton.edu/successfulsocieties/content/focusareas/CS/policynotes/view.xml?id=183.

86 World Bank, Fighting Corruption in Public Services - Chronicling Georgia’s Reforms, op. cit.

87 T. De Waal, “Georgia’s Choices: Charting a Future in Uncertain Times”, op. cit., p. 16.

88 L. Mitchell, Uncertain Democracy: U.S. Foreign Policy and Georgia’s Rose Revolution, Univ. of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 2008, pp. 79–110; S. E. Cornell and N. Nilsson, “Georgian Politics Since the August 2008 War”, Demokratizatsiya: The Journal of Post-Soviet Democratization, Vol. 17, # 3, July 2009, pp. 253–255; M. Lanskoy and G. Areshidze, “Georgia’s Year of Turmoil”, Journal of Democracy, Vol. 19, # 4, 2008, pp. 156–164.

89 Ibid.

90 M. Lanskoy and G. Areshidze, op. cit.; World Bank, Fighting Corruption in Public Services - Chronicling Georgia’s Reforms, op. cit., pp. 10–11.

91 M. Light, op. cit.

92 G. Nodia and A. Pinto Scholtbach, The Political Landscape of Georgia Political Parties: Achievements, Challenges and Prospects, Eburon, Delft, 2006, p. 83.

93 A. Levchenko, “Akaev’s Family Under FBI Investigation”, Times of Central Asia, 9 November 2006; Cited in: J. Engvall, “Kyrgyzstan: Anatomy of a State”, Problems of Post-Communism, Vol. 54, # 4, 2007, p. 37; See also: D. Sershen, “Kyrgyzstan: Akayev-Era Corruption Remains an Issue,” Eurasianet, 15 November 2006, available at: http://www.eurasianet.org/departments/insight/articles/eav111506a.shtml.

94 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 166.

95 Y. Gilinskiy, “Militsiia — Eto Organizovannaia Prestupnaia Gruppirovka,” Delovoi Peterburg, 6 Aug 2009, available at: http://www.dp.ru/a/2009/08/06/JAkov_Gilinskij_Milicija.

96 C. H. Fairbanks, “Clientalism and the Roots of Post-Soviet Disorder”, in Transcaucasia, Nationalism and Social Change: Essays in the History of Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, ed. R. Suny, University of Michigan Press, 1996, pp. 352–355.

97 P. Jones Luong, Institutional Change and Political Continuity in Post-Soviet Central Asia: Power, Perceptions, and Pacts, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge; New York, 2002, pp. 265–266.

98 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., pp. 57–70. For example, both of Putin’s interior ministers, Boris Gryzlov (2001-2003) and Rashid Nurgaliyev (2003-present) are believed to be close to Nikolay Patrushchev, Director of the FSB and a close ally of Putin with whom he shared a KGB and St. Petersburg background. Gryzlov and Patrushchev went to school with each other, allegedly sitting next to each other, and Nurgaliyev served under Patrushchev in the Karelia FSB. (B. D. Taylor, op cit., 2011, pp. 44, 65).

99 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 57.

100 B. D. Taylor, op. cit., p. 62.

101 S. Jones, 2003. “The Role of Cultural Paradigms in Georgian Foreign Policy”, Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics, Vol. 19, #3, 2003, p. 104.

102 S. Jones, op. cit., 2006, p. 34.

103 S. Radnitz, “Networks, Localism and Mobilization in Aksy, Kyrgyzstan”, Central Asian Survey, Vol. 24, #4, 2005, p. 406.

104 S. White, “Elections Russian-Style”, Europe-Asia Studies, Vol. 63, # 4, 2011, p. 533.

105 Y. Zarakhovich, “Police Supermarket Killings in Moscow Reveals Deeper Problems”, Eurasia Daily Monitor, Vol. 6, # 92, 2009, available at: http://www.jamestown.org/single/?no_cache=1&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=34982; Reuters, “Grisly death fuels tales of Russian police torture”, 5 April 2012, available at: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/05/us-russia-police-idUSBRE83419720120405.

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Table des illustrations

Titre Figure - Data on corruption in Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Russia based on the Business Environment and Enterprise Performance Surveys (BEEPS) carried out by the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
Légende Source: World Bank28
URL http://pipss.revues.org/docannexe/image/3964/img-1.png
Fichier image/png, 49k
Titre Figure - Respondents’ opinion of Georgian law enforcement (2004 - 2012)
Légende Source: International Republican Institute33
URL http://pipss.revues.org/docannexe/image/3964/img-2.png
Fichier image/png, 82k
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Kornely Kakachia et Liam O’Shea, « Why does police reform appear to have been more successful in Georgia than in Kyrgyzstan or Russia? », The Journal of Power Institutions in Post-Soviet Societies [En ligne], Issue 13 | 2012, mis en ligne le 24 novembre 2012, consulté le 28 août 2014. URL : http://pipss.revues.org/3964

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Auteurs

Kornely Kakachia

Tbilisi State University

Liam O’Shea

University of St. Andrews

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