Joni Pirtskhalaishvili (Georgian: ჯონი ფირცხალაიშვილი) (born May 22, 1947) is a retired Georgian lieutenant general (1999) who was the country's Minister of Defense from 15 September 1991 to 2 January 1992 and the Chief of the General Staff of the Georgian Armed Forces from May 1998 to September 2003.
Born in Lanchkhuti and a graduate of the Frunze Military Academy in Moscow, Pirtskhalaishvili commanded a Soviet motor-rifle division in Ukraine before returning to Georgia. He briefly served as the country's Defense Minister in the government of President Zviad Gamsakhurdia from September 1991 to January 1992, when Gamsakhurdia was declared deposed in a military coup. During the rule of Eduard Shevardnadze, Pirtskhalaishvili became Deputy Defense Minister under Vardiko Nadibaidze, but ultimately resigned because of differences with Nadibaidze over military reforms. After the dismissal of Nadibaidze in 1998, Major-General Pirtskhalaishvili was appointed Chief of the General Staff and promoted to the rank of lieutenant general. During his tenure, the United States launched the GTEP training program for the Georgian troops and Georgia deployed its contingent in Iraq. During the disputed parliamentary election in November 2003, eventually annulled by the Rose Revolution later that month, Pirtskhalaishvili ran, unsuccessfully, in the Lanchkhuti constituency on a ticket of pro-Shevardnadze election bloc For New Georgia.
|Chief of General Staff of the Georgian Armed Forces
|Minister of Defense of Georgia
- Pirtskhalaishvili, Georgian surname
- (Georgian) საქართველოს სამხედრო და თავდაცვის მინისტრები 1918-2011 წლებში
- (Georgian) საქართველოს თავდაცვის მინისტრები და გენერალური/გაერთიანებული შტაბის უფროსები
- Georgia ejects Chechen militants BBC
- Georgia Deploys Peacekeepers in Baghdad Civil Georgia
- "Georgian Chief of Staff Appointed". Eurasia Monitor Volume: 4 Issue: 90. May 11, 1998. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
- "Train-and-Equip Officially Launched". Civil Georgia. 27 May 2002. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
- "Georgia Deploys Peacekeepers in Baghdad". Civil Georgia. 3 August 2003. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
- "Chief of Staff of Armed Forces, Deputy Security Minister to Run for MP". Civil Georgia. 10 September 2003. Retrieved 3 February 2013.