Georgia - Country history and economic development

1099-1125. David IV (the Builder) establishes the Georgian empire. Beginning of Georgian Golden Age.

1184-1213. Georgia's favorite monarch, Queen Tamara, defeats Turks and extends Georgian rule from the Black Sea to the Caspian Sea.

1220. Georgian Golden Age ends with the invasion of the Mongols under Genghis Khan.

1553. Ottoman Turks and Persians divide Georgia between themselves.

1801. Russian annexation of Georgia.

1811. Georgian Orthodox Church is stripped of its self-governing status as part of the Russification process.

1918. Georgia gains independence.

1921. Red Army invades Georgia and drives out the democratically elected government. Georgia is annexed and becomes part of the new USSR.

1972. Eduard Shevardnadze becomes First Secretary of the Georgian Communist Party and begins anti-corruption campaign.

1989. On 9 April, Soviet troops kill 20 civilians— mainly women—who were involved in a nationalist protest outside the parliament in T'bilisi. From this point on, Soviet rule is totally discredited in Georgia.

1990. In the country's first multi-party elections, a nationalist coalition is victorious and appoints Zviad Gamsakhurdia as president.

1991. On the anniversary of the T'bilisi massacre (9 April), Georgian parliament declares Georgia independent of the Soviet Union.

1991-1992. Gamsakhurdia is elected president by popular vote in May 1991 but is deposed in a coup in January 1992. Shevardnadze is invited by coup leaders to head the transitional government.

1992-1993. Georgian armed forces are defeated in Abkhazia. Abkhazia becomes a de facto independent republic, although it remains part of Georgia's national territory under international law.

1995. Shevardnadze is elected president. His Citizens Union of Georgia party emerges as the largest parliamentary grouping.

2000. Shevardnadze is re-elected president amid many voting irregularities. On 14 June, Georgia becomes the 137th member of the World Trade Organization.

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