Since their independence, Georgia has experienced problems. The Abkhazian and Ossetian nationals began to push for their autonomy in the late 1980's following the advent of Gorbachev's glasnost, or "openness." The tensions escalated until the Georgian Supreme Soviet abolished Sout Ossetia after it declared itself a sovereign reublic in 1990 and a four-party peacekeeping force composed of Russians Georgians, South Ossetians, and North Ossetians to keep the peace after violence broke out.
Soon after, the country's first elected president, Zviad Gamsakhurdia, was driven out of office in January 1992 after charges of corruption, human rights violations, and dictatorial abuse of power. In July 1992, the Abkhaz Supreme Soviet declared its independence and Georgia sent troops to supposedly protect supply routs and pursue Gamsakhurdia's forces.
Russia then became involved again as they began to support the Abkhazian troops. The Georgian forces could not compete with the Russians and were losing until the cease-fire agreement in July 1993. The Abkhazians soon violated the agreement and expelled the Georgian militia and about 200,000 Georgian refugees by October 1993.
Georgia joined the Commonwealth of Independent States that same month in order to win Russian military support and joined the Partnership for Peace in March 1994.
The fighting did not stop and the UN was forced to come in and mediate another cease-fire. The agreement allowed Abkhazia certain degrees of autonomy and independence for remaining a part of Georgia. Disregarding the treaty, Abkhazia adopted its own constitution and declared itself to be the Republic of Abkhazia. Georgia naturally objecte and the tensions continue up to the present.