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30 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili über Weißrussland und die östliche Partnerschaft
30 Sep. '11 Gemeinsame Erklärung des Warschauer Gipfels der östlichen Partnerschaft
30 Sep. '11 Georgien und der Warschauer Gipfel der östlichen Partnerschaft
30 Sep. '11 Franz. Präsident Sarkozy plant Rede im Freien in Tbilisi
29 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili trifft EU-Vertreterin für Außenpolitik Catherine Ashton, aserbaidschanischen Präsident Ilham Aliyev und estnischen Premierminister Andrus Ansip
29 Sep. '11 Russland liefert humanitäre Hilfe an Sokhumi
29 Sep. '11 Warschau veanstaltet Gipfel der östlichen Partnerschaft
28 Sep. '11 Vier Gruppen bis jetzt registriert unter dem neuen Gesetz zum legalen Status von religiösen Minderheiten
28 Sep. '11 Russ. Außenminister Lavrov spricht von Russlands Rolle als 'Garant' für Frieden
28 Sep. '11 Bokeria, Vorsitzender des nationalen Sicherheitsrats, äußert sich zum Medvedev-Putin-Austausch
27 Sep. '11 Außenminister Grigol Vashadze wird Australien, Neuseeland und Fiji besuchen
27 Sep. '11 Gesetzesentwurf zum Börsengang von Staatsunternehmen in zweiter Lesung verabschiedet
27 Sep. '11 Neuer abchasischer Premierminister ernannt: Leonid Lakerbaia
27 Sep. '11 Kommission wird Wählerliste nachprüfen
27 Sep. '11 Abgeordneter der Regierungspartei Akaki Bobokhidze ohrfeigt den Oppositionsabgeordneten Mamradze wegen seiner Äußerungen zum Georgienkrieg 2008
27 Sep. '11 Clinton und Vashadze diskutieren Fragen zur WTO, Afghanistan und Wahlen
26 Sep. '11 Prioritäten der Außenpolitik in der Rede zur Amtseinführung des neuen abchasichen Führers Aleksander Ankvab
26 Sep. '11 Neuer Sprecher von Russland's Föderationsrat besucht Sokhumi
25 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili weist darauf hin, dass die Opposition den Vorschlag zur Erhöhung der Zahl der Abgeordnete einbrachte
25 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili: Steuersystem – nicht perfekt, aber verbessert
24 Sep. '11 Russ. Außenminister Lavrov äußert sich zu Präsident Saakashvili’s UN-Rede
23 Sep. '11 Sokhumi und Tskhinvali erklären, dass sie von Tuvalu anerkannt wurden
23 Sep. '11 Tbilisi verurteilt Russland's Abkommen zu Militärbasen mit Sokhumi und Tskhinvali
23 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili’s vollständige Rede vor der UN-Generalversammlung – 2011
23 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili hält Rede vor der UN-Generalversammlung
22 Sep. '11 EU-Beamter: Freihandelsgespräche mit Georgien bald erwartet
22 Sep. '11 Israel reklamiert die 'Misshandlung' von zwei israel. Staatsbürgern im georg. Gefängnis
22 Sep. '11 Georgien-Krieg bezogener Fall Georgien gegen Russland am int. Gerichtshof für Menschenrechte angehört
22 Sep. '11 Georgien erwähnt in der Rede des estnischen Präsidenten bei der UN
21 Sep. '11 Papuashvili zum Vorsitzenden des Verfassungsgerichts wiedergewählt
21 Sep. '11 Ein Toter bei Autoexplosion in Sokhumi
21 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili äußert sich zur palästinensischen Eigenstaatlichkeit
20 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili ist in New York zur UN-Generalversammlung
Er hält bilaterale Treffen mit Finland, Lithuania, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Bolivia, Mongolia, Nigeria und Swiss President und Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey ab.
In seine Rede wird er auf die Position Georgiens in Bezug auf die Sicherheit Georgiens und der Region eingehen sowie die fortgesetzten politischen und ökonomischen Reformen ansprechen.
20 Sep. '11 Oppositionspartei plant 'Marsch der Georgier'
20 Sep. '11 Medvedev fragt die Duma an, um ein Zollabkommen mit Tskhinvali zu ratifizieren
20 Sep. '11 Georgischer Außenminister hält bilaterale Treffen auf der UN ab mit sechs anderen Außenministern
17 Sep. '11 Gesetzesentwurf zum neuen Wahlverfahren herausgegeben
Draft of the new electoral code, expected to be approved before the end of this year, was formally initiated in the Parliament on September 19.
The new 141-page document, which is slated to replace the current 171-page electoral code amended for 46 times since its approval in 2001, was drafted by the ruling party lawmakers.
Key changes in the draft involve those provisions, which have been agreed between the ruling National Movement party and several opposition parties in June, including, among others, increasing seats in Parliament from current 150 to 190 (also requiring a constitutional amendment, which has yet to be initiated) and party campaign funding.
    New Electoral System Outlined
According to ruling party lawmakers the draft of new electoral code, which seems to be better structured than the existing one, has been sent for an expertise to the Council of Europe’s advisory body for legal and constitutional affairs, Venice Commission, last week.
“Although the draft has been initiated, its discussion will start after the conclusions by the Venice Commission becomes available; meanwhile, the society, media and non-governmental sector will have an opportunity to study it,” Davit Bakradze, the parliamentary chairman, said on September 19.
Other Changes
Several of the proposed changes, other than those envisaged by the electoral system reform deal, are in line with the recommendations tabled by the Venice Commission last year; although not all of those recommendations are addressed in the draft.
The proposed draft of new code does not envisage voter marking procedure on the election day. The system of marking a finger with special invisible ink to avoid multiple voting has been in practice in Georgia since partially annulled November 2003 parliamentary elections.
A provision allowing use of CCTV cameras at polling stations with a purpose to prevent violations and to verify complaints on alleged violations is also removed from the draft of new code.
Last year the Venice Commission recommended removing this provision from the code, describing it as “problematic”, arguing that the use of recording devices in the polling station, “even if it does not infringe on the secrecy of the ballot, may appear to do so and can also intimidate some voters.”
Unlike the current code, the draft does not contain a provision, which obliges the Central Election Commission to announce a total number of voters before the election day. It, however, will still have to indicate total number of voters in a final vote tally.
Rule of composition of Central Election Commission and lower level election administrations remains the same. The draft envisages doubling salaries for members and staff of the Central Election Commission and District Election Commissions during the electoral period.
If approved the new code will allow electoral commission chairperson to take a decision regarding registering of an electoral subject. Such decision is currently taken collectively by CEC members.
According to the draft, CEC chairperson and not respective district election commissions will have to take a decision on whether or not to register a majoritarian MP candidate running in a single-mandate constituency.
The draft simplifies procurement procedures for CEC during the electoral period and removes a provision which currently obliges CEC to submit its financial report to the Ministry of Finance.
CEC has to approve parliamentary election final vote tally within 19 days after the elections, instead of current 18 days, according to the draft. In case of presidential election, this deadline is extended from current 8 to 20 days.
In respect of filing complaints, the draft allows to appeal a decision of precinct election commissions not only to district commissions (within two days), but also directly to the court within four days. But the decision of district election commissions will still have to be appealed at first to Central Election Commission and only after that to the court if needed, according to the draft.
In respect of use of administrative resources, the draft mainly replicates provisions from the current code. The draft, like the current code, bans the authorities to undertake any additional spending, for example for new social and welfare programs, during an electoral campaign apart from those envisaged in advance in an annual budget. In this respect the draft adds a provision according to which an unspecified “authorized person” will have the right to appeal the court if such additional spending takes place during the electoral period.
The draft also adds a provision that bans district election commissions to be housed in administrative buildings of local authorities.
The election code allows use of administrative resources for campaign purposes, but it says that the resources should be accessible equally for all the parties and candidates. In its recommendations last year, the Venice Commission said that although “provision appears to adhere to the equal opportunity principle” in practice the governing party usually have easier access to such resource and for that reason the code “should expressly prohibit direct or indirect use of all types of administrative resources – financial, material, technical, and human resources.”
It was the Venice Commission’s recommendation to enact a new electoral code rather than further emending it in order to “help systematise and streamline the provisions, as well as eliminate ambiguities and inconsistencies between the Code’s various articles, which possibly have resulted from frequent amendments in the past years.”
16 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili: Russland wird zusammenbrechen, wenn es seine aggressive Politik fortsetzt
16 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili verteidigt die Afghanistan-Mission Georgien's
16 Sep. '11 Streik der Erntearbeiter endet als die Polizei einzog
15 Sep. '11 Patriarch Ilia II. hofft auf ein 'Wunder' in den georg.-russ. Beziehungen
Neben Präsident Saakashvili stehend in der kürzlich neu eröffneten Kirche im Kazbegi Distrikt würdigte er die Bedeutung dieser Kirche wegen der nähe zur russ. Grenze, da sie sogar als Treffpunkt "für Gespräche zwischen den Staatsoberhäuptern" dienen könnte.
Er sagte auch: “Ich glaube, dass diese Kirche uns ein Wunder zeigen wird, und ich glaube, dass dieses Wunder sich in der Tatsache äußern wird, dass unsere Länder wieder in einer friedlichen Beziehung sein werden.”
Standing beside President Saakashvili in a newly opened church close to the Russian border, head of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Ilia II, hinted on the need of talks between the Georgian and Russian leaders.
Ilia II said that the new church in the mountainous Kazbegi district was of special importance, because of its proximity to the border with Russia, which could even serve as a venue “for talks between the heads of states.”
Later in the same speech Ilia II also said: “I think this church will show us a miracle and I think that this miracle will be expressed in [the fact] that our countries will again be in peaceful relationship.”
This part of the Patriarch’s speech was also included in a press release, which the Georgian President’s administration released in connect to Saakashvili’s participation in the ceremony of opening the new church in Dariali gorge. It says: “His Holiness and Beatitude [Ilia II] expressed hope that with the blessing of this church the two countries [Georgia and Russia] will restore relations and the peace will be established again.”
Ilia II, whom former U.S. ambassador to Georgia John Tefft described in one of the leaked cables as “astute diplomat”, called on the Georgian and Russian leaders in March “to show wisdom” and launch talks “on various levels” between the two countries.
The Georgian Patriarch met with Russia’s President Dmitri Medvedev in December 2008, when he was in Moscow to attend funeral of Russian Patriarch Alexy II. President Saakashvili at the time hailed the Church’s “diplomatic mission.”
According to a December 2008 confidential U.S. embassy cable, released by WikiLeaks, which details a meeting between then U.S. ambassador and the Georgian Patriarch, Ilia II “expressed his desire to serve a positive role in normalizing and stabilizing relations with Russia.”
15 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili erwartet Fortschritte in der Frage der NATO-Integration
15 Sep. '11 Zentralbank hält Leitzins bei 7.5%
14 Sep. '11 Premierminister Gilauri erwartet 'Hunderte von Millionen' vom Börsengang der Staatsunternehmen
14 Sep. '11 Neuer Gouverneur von Shida Kartli ernannt: Giorgi Tatishvili
13 Sep. '11 Gesetzesentwurf, der den Börsengang von Staatsunternehmen erlaubt, bestätigt
13 Sep. '11 Abgeordneterr der Regierungspartei: Neues Wahlgesetz formuliert
13 Sep. '11 Litauischer Außenminister Ažubalis: 'Georgien verdient ein starkes Signal von der NATO'
13 Sep. '11 Litauischer Außenminister Ažubalis zu den Beziehungen EU-Georgien
Er wolle auf dem anstehenden Gipfel "östliche Partnerschaft" eine "sehr konkrete Erklärung".
13 Sep. '11 Außenminister Vashadze: 5.Runde der WTO-Gespräche mit Russland wirft keine Resulte ab
12 Sep. '11 Parlamentspräsident Bakradze: 'Georgien bereit für NATO-Mitgliedschaft'
Er sagte dies angesichts des bevorstehenden Besuchs von NATO-Diplomaten am 9. und 10.11.
12 Sep. '11 Britischer Premierminister Cameron spricht Georgien an bei den Gesprächen mit dem russ. Präsidenten Medvedev
“We discussed the need to ensure security and confidence for Georgia and Russia implementing the 2008 ceasefire in full,” the British PM said in his opening remarks ...
12 Sep. '11 Georgiens EU-Botschafterin Samadashvili: Georgien wird Freihandelsgespräche mit Europa in diesem Jahr beginnen
Im nächsten Jahr ist das Hauptziel, Gespräche zum visafreien Reiseverkehr mir der EU zu beginnen.
12 Sep. '11 Georgische und russische Unterhändler treffen sich zu WTO-Gesprächen
12 Sep. '11 Billigflieger flydubai wird Tbilisi-Flüge starten
12 Sep. '11 NATO-Generalsekretär Rasmussen und NATO-Diplomaten werden am 9. und 10.11. Georgien besuchen
Russland verurteilte den Besuch als "unzeitig" und passe nicht zu dem Interesse, die Region zu stabilisieren.
11 Sep. '11 Geostat: ausländische Direktinvestitionen im 1. Halbjahr 0,6% angestiegen
11 Sep. '11 Obama's 9/11 Message to World: the Partnership We Need
10 Sep. '11 Verteidigungsminister Akhalaia and US-georg. Kooperation in der Verteidigung in den "Leaked Cables"
9 Sep. '11 35-Jahre alterr Minenarbeiter in Tkibuli tödlich verunglückt
9 Sep. '11 Tbilisi ruft westliche Diplomaten auf, bezüglich der Verletzung des georg. Lufraumes durch russ. Militärhelikopter zu reagieren
9 Sep. '11 1.79 Mio. ausländische Besucher bereits in 2011; Armenier, Türken und Aserbaidschaner machen den größten Anteil aus
8 Sep. '11 Russland streitet die Verrletzung des georg. Luftraumes ab
8 Sep. '11 MagtiCom plant Satelliten-Pay-TV Dienst
8 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili und moldawischer premierminister Vlad Filat diskutierten gemeinsame Strategie für Gipfel "östliche Partnerschaft" in Polen
8 Sep. '11 Tbilisi klagt Moskau der Verletzung des georg. Luftraumes an
8 Sep. '11 Georgien drückt sein Beileid zum Flugzeugabsturz in Russland aus
8 Sep. '11 IDS Borjomi bestätigt Gespräche mit der russ. Consumer Protection Agency
7 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili erwartet 'Durchbruch' für Georgien's Weg zur EU-Integration auf dem anstehenden Gipfel "östliche Partnerschaft" in Polen
7 Sep. '11 HSBC-Bank wird sich aus Georgien zurückziehen, führt begrenzte Größe' an
7 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili in Polen zu einem Wirtschaftsforum
7 Sep. '11 Russ. Consumer Protection Agency erklärt, dass sie in gesprächen mit dem Borjomi-Hersteller sei
6 Sep. '11 Abgeordneter der Regierrungspartei bezichtigt GYLA des 'absichtlichen Lügens'
6 Sep. '11 GYLA stellt die offizielle Vesion des Todes von Nika Kvintradze durch Stromschlag in Frage
5 Sep. '11 Suchumi wird 'maßvolle präsidiale Amtseinführung' abhalten
5 Sep. '11 Geostat: jährliche Inflation 7.2% im August
4 Sep. '11 Präsident Saakashvili betont wieder die 'breite Fächerung des Weinexports'
3 Sep. '11 Saakashvili: 'Wine - Georgia's Passport in Civilized World'
3 Sep. '11 Leaked Cable: CDM Mayoral Candidate Encouraged by Gov't to Run
2 Sep. '11 Alasania's Party Hires Lobbying Firm in U.S., Europe
1 Sep. '11 Leaked Cable: 'Georgia Sticks by its Guns on Border Crossing Issue' in WTO Talks with Russia
1 Sep. '11 Tenth Georgia Soldier Killed in Afghanistan
31 Aug. '11 Three Parties Contest for MP Seat in By-Election
30 Aug. '11 Saakashvili: Parliament Relocation to 'Change Social Psychology'
30 Aug. '11 European Parliament President on Abkhaz Vote
30 Aug. '11 U.S. 'Does Not Recognize' Abkhaz Vote
29 Aug. '11 Ombudsman Slams Mistreatment of Inmates in Kutaisi Prison
29 Aug. '11 Georgian Opposition Party 'Respects' Choice of Abkhaz Voters
29 Aug. '11 Russian Patriarch Congratulates Ankvab on Election
28 Aug. '11 Bakradze to Visit Singapore, Australia, N.Zealand
27 Aug. '11 EU 'Does Not Recognise' Abkhaz Vote
27 Aug. '11 New Abkhaz Leader
27 Aug. '11 Russian MFA Hails Abkhaz Elections
27 Aug. '11 NATO 'Does Not Recognise' Abkhaz Vote
27 Aug. '11 Medvedev Congratulates Ankvab on Victory
27 Aug. '11 Abkhaz CEC: Ankvab Wins Elections
27 Aug. '11 Khajimba Calls on CEC not to Hurry with Election Results
27 Aug. '11 Ankvab Claims Victory in Abkhaz Election
26 Aug. '11 Khajimba Says Ankvab Leads, Runoff Likely
26 Aug. '11 Abkhaz Vote Count Underway
26 Aug. '11 Abkhaz CEC: High Voter Turnout Makes Election Valid
26 Aug. '11 Georgian MFA Condemns Abkhaz Vote
26 Aug. '11 Bakradze: Abkhaz Election is Power Struggle Between Russian-Controlled Clans
26 Aug. '11 EU Appoints New Envoy for S.Caucasus, Co-Chair of Geneva Talks
26 Aug. '11 Voting Underway in Breakaway Abkhazia
26 Aug. '11 Georgian Foreign Minister Visits Brazil
25 Aug. '11 Medvedev Meets Kokoity in Sochi
25 Aug. '11 U.S.-Funded Ship Maintenance Facility for Georgia Coast Guard
25 Aug. '11 EUMM: 'No Evidence of Any Planned Provocation'
25 Aug. '11 U.S., NATO Military Commander in Europe Visits Georgia
25 Aug. '11 Race for Abkhaz Leadership
24 Aug. '11 Russia's Emergency Situations Minister Visits Tskhinvali
24 Aug. '11 Tbilisi Says Russia Trying to Create 'Artificial Tension'
24 Aug. '11 Wahlen in Abchasien: Kandidat Raul Khajimba sagt Stichwahl vorher
Khajimba war Vizepräsident von 2005-2009 in der abtrünnigen Region, legte aber 2009 wegen Unstimmigkeiten mit Sergey Bagapsh das Amt nieder.
23 Aug. '11 Außenministerium zu den Entwicklungen in Libyen
Es wird die Tatsache begrüßt, dass der Kampf des libyschen Volkes für die Freiheit in den letzten Tagen in die entscheidende Phase getreten ist.
23 Aug. '11 Ankvab: Wahrscccheinlichkeit von Spannungen nach den Wahlen 'sehr gering'
23 Aug. '11 Moskau klagt Tbilisi an, 'eine großangelegt Provokation' im abtrünnigen Südossetien anzuzetteln
22 Aug. '11 Präsident Saakashvili bei der Eröffnung eines Urlaubsresorts in Anaklia: Anaklia alleine wird 2013 um 200,000 Touristen beherbergen und 2015 um 400,000'
22 Aug. '11 Außenminister Grigol Vashadze trifft WTO-Direktor Pascal Lamy in Salzburg
22 Aug. '11 Qatar Airways stertet später mit Flügen nach Georgien
21 Aug. '11 Überschwemmungen in Lagodekhi, Sagarejo und Gurjaani Distrikt in Kacheti
20 Aug. '11 Shamba leicht verletzt bei Autounfall
20 Aug. '11 Kreml-Stabschef trifft Kokoity
19 Aug. '11 Nino Burjanadze’s Ehemann verurteilt in Abwesenheit
19 Aug. '11 Abchasische Abgeordnete treffen Kandidaten
18 Aug. '11 Leichtes Erdbeben triftt die Ratscha-Region
18 Aug. '11 Zeitung Kommersant: Moskau wählt neuen Führer für Südossetien aus: Anatoly Bibilov
18 Aug. '11 Diplomats von Georgien und der Schweiz diskutieren die WTO-Gespräche mit Russland
17 Aug. '11 Shamba steigert die Angriffe auf Ankvab
17 Aug. '11 Zentralbank reduziert Leitzins auf 7.5%
17 Aug. '11 Electrizitätsausfall im konsularischen Büro Georgiens in Moskau zum zweiten Mal in diesem Monat
17 Aug. '11 Tskhinvali legt Wahldatum fest
16 Aug. '11 Ankvab beschuldigt Shamba der 'Provokation' im Vorfeld der abchasischen Wahlen
16 Aug. '11 Russ. Diplomat: 'kein Grund, Präferenzen zu haben' in den abchasischen Wahlen zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh
15 Aug. '11 Geostat: 2010 sind die ausländischen Direktinvestitionen angestiegen von 553.1 Mio. USD auf 814
In its final report on foreign direct investment, released on August 15, the Georgian state statistics agency, Geostat, revised its preliminary figures of 2010 FDI upwards from USD 553.1 million to USD 814 million. 
Geostat said that this “sharp difference” between the preliminary and final data is caused with a new methodology of compiling the report. The new method, according to Geostat, uses companies’ consolidated financial statements – an aggregated data of financial position of a parent and its subsidiaries – making scope of surveyed entities broader.
According to preliminary figure released in March the FDI in 2010 declined over previous year by 16%; but the final figure of USD 814 million is 24% increase year-on-year.
The revised FDI figure made 7% of Georgia’s GDP in 2010, up from 6% in 2009 and down from 12% in 2008.
A breakdown of FDI inflows by country has also been revised in final data.
In the preliminary data most of the FDI came from companies registered in the Netherlands – USD 143.2 million; in the final report the figure was revised down to USD 73.4 million making it on the third place after the U.S. with USD 135.8 million and Turkey - USD 91.8 million. Other major sources of FDI, according to final report, in 2010 were UK with USD 59 million; Azerbaijan - USD 58 million; United Arab Emirates - USD 55.5 million.
Breakdown of FDI inflows by sectors has also been revised. Extraction and processing industry attracted the biggest share of FDI in 2010 with USD 228.8 million or 28.1%, according to final figures; followed by transport and communication sector USD 215.1 million (26.4%); real estate - USD 119.3 million; financial sector - USD 107.4 million (17.7%).
15 Aug. '11 Alasania warnt vor der beabsichtigten Veräußerung von Anteilen von Staatsunternehmen an der Börse
15 Aug. '11 Intern Vertriebene, die seit 20 Jahren im  ehemaligen Hotel 'Abkhazia' untergebracht waren, wurden zwangsgeräumt
A building in Saburtalo district of Tbilisi, formerly hotel “Abkhazia”, which for over twenty years was housing families displaced as a result of conflict in South Ossetia in early 1990s, was emptied on August 15.
Eviction started in early hours on Monday after police sealed off the area around the collective center; trucks were sent to transport belongings of IDP families. Displaced families living in “Abkhazia” have been protesting in recent days against the eviction, but no incidents and clashes were reported with the police during the eviction on Monday.
One part of more than 270 displaced families left the building over the weekend after agreeing on USD 10,000 compensation offered by the authorities. As an alternative option to financial compensation, IDP families were offered a living space in Rustavi, town close to Tbilisi; an apartment building in Rustavi is currently under construction and the authorities say they would cover rent fee for those IDP families who will agree on settlement in Rustavi before the new apartment building is built there.
Although the authorities launched transferring some of the collective centers in ownership to IDP families living there, the same rule does not apply to some other collective centers in Tbilisi, especially to those, which have high real estate value; “Abkhazia” was among them, which already has a private investor.
A total of 1,248 displaced families were evicted from various buildings in Tbilisi in two rounds of evictions, between June 2010 and February 2011. In the new round of eviction fifty displaced families were evicted from four temporary shelters in Tbilisi this July as part of, what the authorities call, resettlement process in which evicted families are offered housing options in the provinces, mainly in remote areas from the capital city. In majority of cases alternative houses in the provinces are rejected by the IDP families, because of absence of proper livelihood conditions there.
15 Aug. '11 Tskhinvali wird ein Referendum zur russ. Sprache als zweite Amtssprache im November abhalten
13 Aug. '11 Ombudsmann Giorgi Tugushi äußert sich zur geplanten Zwangsräumung von intern Vertriebenen in Tbilisi
12 Aug. '11 Russland wirft Georgien for, Militanten im Nordkaukasus zu helfen
Russia's National Counter-Terrorism Committee has claimed that Georgia was providing assistance to one of the Islamist insurgent groups in North Caucasus in its "terrorism activities."
National Counter-Terrorism Committee (NAK), which is Russia's government body operating under the Federal Security Service (FSB) and coordinating anti-terrorism policies , leveled the allegation in its written statement on its website on August 12.
Russia said its security forces killed six militants in Makhachkala, Dagestan on August 10-11, including the group's leader Abdulla Mogamedaliyev.
"Through his foreign emissaries Mogamedaliyev maintained contacts with the Georgian special services, which were providing him assistance in carrying out terrorist activities," the statement released by NAK reads, providing no further details of its allegation.
Russian officials are time after time accusing Georgia of assisting Islamist insurgents in North Caucasus, or sometimes even hinting on Georgia's possible involvement in various terrorist acts in Russia. Those allegations, however, are mainly made in thier verbal remarks; this recent allegation is a rare case when the allegation has been voiced through a written statement.
In its recent report on Russia-Georgia conflict released on the third anniversary of the August war, the Brussels-based think-tank International Crisis Group wrote that "the third-country diplomats say they have seen no supporting evidence" of these sporadic allegations by the Russian officials.
"The Russians do not seem entirely serious about their allegations, using them instead perhaps to prepare the ground to blame Georgia should there be a grave breach of security in Russia, especially around the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games," the report reads.
International Crisis Group called on Georgia to refrain from responding "nervously to every Russian politician’s allegation" and urged Russian officials to refrain from "making unsubstantiated and provocative allegations without firm evidence."
11 Aug. '11 Georgien's elektronischer Kommunikationsmarket im Jahr 2010 im Überblick
10 Aug. '11 Gesetzesänderung vorgeschlagen, Minoritätsanteile von Staatsunternehmen an den Börsen von London und Warschau anzubieten
10 Aug. '11 Präsident Saakashvili äußert sich zum Georgien-Interview vom russ. Präsidenten Medvedev
President Saakashvili said on August 9, that his Russian counterpart, whom he described as lacking "real power" and being "under the shadow of another man", was paying too much attention to Georgia and personally to him which was not "a normal situation."
"Few days ago I've seen on TV the President of the country, which is hundred-fold larger than [Georgia]," Saakashvili said referring to a lengthy interview which Medvedev gave on August 4 to Georgian and Russian media outlets.
He said that his press office "counted" and found out that from 55-minute interview Medvedev "dedicated 39 minutes to me."
"Doesn't the leader - although with limited powers - of such a huge country have anything else to do but to think about the Georgian President?" Saakashvili said. "That's not a normal situation, because we do not want to be part of various geopolitical games."
He also said that he had not watched Medvedev's interview "in full, because I have many other things to do."
Saakashvili made the remarks while speaking with a group of young people participating in the Georgian government-funded Patriotic Camp in Anaklia on the Black Sea coast close to breakaway Abkhazia.
Also on August 9 the Georgian Foreign Ministry said that it was "yet another cynical step" by President Medvedev to submit to Russia's State Duma for ratification military base treaties with Sokhumi and Tskhinvali on the eve of the three year anniversary of the 2008 war.
9 Aug. '11 USA wiederholen ihre 'starke Unterstützung' für Georgien
8 Aug. '11 Russ. Außenminister Lavrov beleidigt Präsident Saakashvili
8 Aug. '11 Georgischer Unterhändler Sergi Kapanadze der WTO-Gespräche mit Russland spricht über einige Details
8 Aug. '11 Russ. Präsident fragt das Parlament an, die Abkommen zu russ. Militärbasen in Sokhumi und Tskhinvali zu bestätigen
7 Aug. '11 Russ. sprachige Schatten-Webseite stellt sechs angebliche Audioaufnahmen zum Fall der Fotographen ins Netz
6 Aug. '11 Georgien verurteilt Medvedev's 'Kalter-Krieg-Rhetorik'
6 Aug. '11 Russland's Fluglinie S7 startet Flüge Moscow-Kutaisi
5 Aug. '11 Amnesty-Bericht zur Zwangsräumung von intern Vertriebenen in Tbilisi
5 Aug. '11 Russ. Präsident Medvedev zu den Beziehungen mit Georgien
Russland sei bereit, den Schweizer Vorschlag zu den WTO-Gesprächen anzunehmen; mehrere Äußerungen gegen den georg. Präsidenten Saakashvili; aktuell keine legalen oder faktischen Voraussetzungen für einen Anschluss Südossetiens an Russland
4 Aug. '11 Union der Veteranen des Abchasienkriegs unterstützen Ankvab bei der Wahl zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh
4 Aug. '11 Premierminister Nika Gilauri begrüßt den weiteren Rückgang der Inflation
3 Aug. '11 Jährliche Inflation gesunken auf 8.5% im Juli nach Geostat
3 Aug. '11 Präsident Saakashvili äußert sich zu den Anschlägen in Norwegen; er sagt, der Schütze sei eine 'Bestie'
2 Aug. '11 Präsident Saakashvili: 'Wir sind in der richtigen Spur'
2 Aug. '11 Putin äußert sich zu den 'zwei Ossetien'
2 Aug. '11 Firma, die den Fernsehturm nach der Versteigerung der Nutzungsrechte betreiben wird, wurde genannt: Golden Com
2 Aug. '11 Russ. Außenminister Lavrov verurteilt Resolution des US-Senat
2 Aug. '11 Abgeordnetennachwahl in Telavi am 2. Oktober
1 Aug. '11 Vierjährige Nutzungsrechte für den Fernsehturm sind auf einer Online-Auktion für 110.000 GEL versteigert worden
31 Jul. '11 Georgien lobt die Resolution des US-Senat
30 Jul. '11 Güterzug ausserhalb von Tbilisi entgleist
30 Jul. '11 Resolution zur Okkupation im US-Senat verabschiedet
In der Resolution wird Georgiens territoriale Integrität unterstützt und Abchasien und Südosseten als "von Russland besetzte Regionen" anerkannt. ...
The U.S. Senate unanimously passed on July 29 a resolution supporting Georgia’s territorial integrity and recognizing Abkhazia and South Ossetia as regions “occupied by the Russian Federation”.
The resolution, S. RES. 175, was sponsored by Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen and Republican Senator Lindsay Graham. The both Senators are co-chair of Georgia Task Force at the U.S. think-tank Atlantic Council - a bipartisan group aimed at promoting policy debate on Georgia.
“Today, the Senate spoke with one voice in support of Georgia’s territorial integrity,” Senator Shaheen said on July 29.  “While I am pleased by the Senate’s action and the clear message we are sending to Georgia and the Russian Federation, the situation there remains fragile and unresolved, as Russian troops are still occupying Georgia’s Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions.”
Georgia’s ambassador to the United States, Temur Yakobashvili, praised the resolution.
“This document is a very solid and firm foundation for de-occupation of the Georgian territories,” Yakobashvili said.
 -  Tbilisi's reaction to the resolution.
The approved resolution is slightly amended from its initial draft, which was first referred to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations in December, 2010; but in essence the document remains the same, calling on Russia to withdraw troops to pre-August, 2008 war positions.
In one of the amendments the final text changes term “de facto” in reference to the authorities in breakaway regions with “the authorities in control in the regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia” – a wording used by the Georgian government in its State Strategy on Occupied Territories.
Among other amendments introduced in the final text are references to some of the new developments, which have taken place since December, such as remarks by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the April 15, 2011 meeting in Berlin between the Foreign Ministers of NATO and Georgia in which she said that she shared Georgia’s concerns regarding “recent Russian activities that can negatively affect regional stability.” The draft also makes a reference to the Russian Foreign Minister’s visits to Sokhumi and Tskhinvali in April.
The resolution affirms that it is “the policy of the United States to support the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of Georgia and the inviolability of its borders, and to recognize Abkhazia and South Ossetia as regions of Georgia occupied by the Russian Federation.”
It calls on Moscow, Tskhinvali and Sokhumi to allow for the full and dignified return of internally displaced persons and international missions to Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
The resolution also says that the Senate “supports peaceful, constructive engagement and confidence-building measures between the Government of Georgia and the authorities in control in South Ossetia and Abkhazia and encourages additional people-to-people contacts.”
“[The Senate] affirms that finding a peaceful resolution to the conflict is a key priority for the United States in the Caucasus region and that lasting regional stability can only be achieved through peaceful means and long-term diplomatic and political dialogue between all parties,” the resolution says.
The Georgian authorities have been actively lobbying for this type of resolution, that would refer to Abkhazia and South Ossetia as occupied regions, in Washington and other western capitals, describing the effort as part of “de-occupation policy”.
Georgian parliamentary committee for foreign relations has requested lawmakers from 31 countries to “declare the two Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as being territories under Russian occupation and recognise the ethnic cleansing committed by Russia” in those territories.
"We don’t know what else to call it," he said while speaking at the Global Security 2011 Forum in Bratislava on March 3.

29 Jul. '11 Georgien plant 'Denkmal zum Genocide an den Tscherkessen'
Anaklia, ein Dorf an der Schwarzmeerküste nahe dem abtrünnigen Abchasien, wurde als Ort für das geplante Denkmal ausgewählt, erklärte Staatsminister Papuna Davitaia. ...
Georgia, which has become the first country to recognize 19th century massacre and deportations of Circassians by the Tsarist Russia as genocide, plans to open a memorial next year to commemorate the victims.
Anaklia, a Black Sea coast village close to breakaway Abkhazia, has been selected as a site for the planned memorial, Papuna Davitaia, Georgia’s state minister for diaspora issues, said on July 29.
He said that the memorial's design would be selected through a competition planned to be announced by the state commission in charge of this issue in September.
The Georgian government wants to open the memorial in May, 2012 when the Circassian diaspora will commemorate 148th anniversary of the genocide, Davitaia said.
The Georgian Parliament passed on May 20 a resolution saying that mass killings of the Circassians by the Tsarist Russia in second half of 19th century, accompanied by "deliberate famine and epidemics", should be recognized as "genocide".
In a separate, July 1 resolution the Parliament instructed the government to undertake measure for opening a memorial and also Circassian cultural center.
29 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili besucht Peru zur Amtseinführung des neuen Präsidenten Ollanta Humala
29 Jul. '11 Russland erklärt, dass Berichte um seine Beteiligung bei dem Anschlag nahe der US-Botschaft in Tbilisi am 22.09.10 'Propaganda' seien
A report by the Washington Times that the U.S. intelligence agencies corroborated findings of the Georgian authorities which traced an explosion close to the U.S. embassy in Tbilisi to a Russian military officer, is an attempt to stir new wave of "propaganda hype", Grigory Karasin, the Russian deputy foreign minister, said on July 28.
An explosive went off about 60 meters from the U.S. embassy's exterior wall in Tbilisi on September 22, 2010; police said they destroyed another explosive device at the same location; no one was injured and no property of the embassy was damaged.
Series of other explosions took place in Tbilisi in October and November, 2010 in which an elderly woman was died. In December, 2010 the Georgian Interior Ministry said it arrested several Georgian citizens suspected of carrying out these explosions; it said that the group was acting under the instructions of the Abkhaz-based Russian military officer.
Late last month court in Tbilisi found 15 people guilty of terrorist in connection to these blasts and sentenced some of them to a lengthy prison terms. Russian Maj. Yevgeny Borisov, claimed by Tbilisi to be a mastermind of the blasts, was sentenced to 30 years of jail term in absentia.
On July 21 the Washington Times ran an article about Georgia's allegations. Republican Senator Mark Kirk told the newspaper, that if Georgia's claims were true "a Russian-sponsored attack on a U.S. Embassy would constitute the most serious crisis in U.S.-Russian relations since the Cold War and put to lie any ‘reset’ in bilateral relations.”
On July 27 the Washington Times reported in a separate article, that "highly classified report" by the U.S. intelligence agencies on the September 22 blast outside the U.S. embassy's exterior wall confirmed Georgia's allegations that the Russian officer was a mastermind of the explosion.
The newspaper was quoting as a source two unnamed U.S. officials who had read the classified report.
"It seems, that this article [by the Washington Times] aims at stirring second wave of information [campaign] over this issue, which has already been discussed both with the Americans and with Georgian representatives in the beginning of this year," Grigory Karasin, the Russian deputy foreign minister, said in a comment posted on the Russian Foreign Ministry's website.
He said that because of "an obvious sensitivity of the issue", Moscow reacted to the allegation that Russia was involved in the terrorist attacks in Georgia "responsibly".
"We have carried out a relevant, professional investigation," Karasin said. "Both the Americans and official representatives of Tbilisi were informed about results of this work."
"We believe that this kind of issue should be considered seriously without excessive propaganda hype. But it seems that's not the goal of those who are behind this campaign," Karasin said, adding that channels of communication on this issue "are still open on our part."
In its most recent, third article on the issue, posted on its website on July 28, the Washington Times reported that U.S. National Intelligence Council, analytical arm of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, provided Congress on Thursday with a new analysis of the blast. Quoting an unnamed U.S. official, the Washington Times reported that there was “no consensus” on responsibility for the Tbilisi blast.
In December, 2010 Georgia asked Russia to cooperation in the investigation; officials in Tbilisi have said for number of times, that Russia was not willing to cooperate.
Deputy spokesman for the U.S. Department of State, Mark C. Toner, declined to comment on the issue on July 27, saying: "We don’t comment on investigations into intelligence matters."
28 Jul. '11 Einige Medienaktivisten und Oppositionsopolitiker fordern Transparenz bei der Auktion der Nutzungsrechte des Fernsehturms
28 Jul. '11 Tamta Liparteliani wird für tot erklärt: sie wurde unter den Toten des Massakers auf der Insel Utøya in Norwegen identifiziert
Tamta Liparteliani, 23-year-old Georgian citizen who was reported missing after a gunman killed 68 at youth camp on Norway's island of Utøya, has been identified as being among the dead, a Georgian official said on Thursday.
“Our worst fears were confirmed,” Nino Kalandadze, the Georgian deputy foreign minister, said on July 28. “We were notified [by the Norwegian authorities] this morning, that the girl was identified as being among the dead. It’s a huge tragedy for all of us.”
She said Liparteliani’s parents, who arrived in Oslo on July 27, had been informed about the finding this morning.
Native of Kutaisi, Georgia's second largest city in western part of the country, Liparteliani was among participants of the summer camp organized by the youth wing of the Norway's ruling Labor Party. She was an activist of Kutaisi branch of movement Young Socialists of Georgia.
Another Georgian participant of the youth camp, Natia Chkhetiani, an activist of the same movement survived in the attack.
The Georgian Deputy Foreign Minister said that identifying of Liparteliani was made possible after the Georgian side sent to the Norwegian authorities her biometric data on July 27.
27 Jul. '11 Kandidaten in abchasischen Wahlen zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh unterzeichnen Verspechen zu einer 'sauberen und fairen Wahl'
27 Jul. '11 Berufungsgericht hält das Urteil im Fall der israelischen Geschäftsmänner aufrecht
27 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili äußert sich zu dem vorgeschlagenen Anstieg der Zahl der Abgeordneten
27 Jul. '11 Georgischer und russischer Patriarch treffen sich in Kiev
26 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili lobt die polnisch-georgischen Beziehungen
26 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili zu Europa: 'Weissrussland nicht isolieren'
26 Jul. '11 Premierminister erwartet ein weiteres Abfallen der Inflation
26 Jul. '11 Regierungspartei in Abchassien unterstützt Ankvab in Wahlen zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh
25 Jul. '11 Georgischer und russischer Patriarch werden sich in Kiev treffen
25 Jul. '11 Georgien's Handelsbilanzdefizit im ersten Halbjahr angestiegen auf 2 Mrd. USD
Export ist um 44% angestiegen auf über 1 Mrd. USD, der Import um 36% auf 3 Mrd. USD.
25 Jul. '11 Außenministerium: Maßnahmen zum Schutz von Dokumenten des Ministeriums werden natürlich verstärkt
Following the photographers’ case, Georgian Foreign Ministry will “naturally tighten” measures for protecting the ministry’s confidential documents from unauthorized access, Georgian Deputy Foreign Minister, Nino Kalandadze, said.
Giorgi Abdaladze, a freelance photojournalist who was also working on contract with the Foreign Ministry taking photos of various events at the ministry, was among the photographers arrested and charged with espionage for Russia. On July 22 four photojournalists were found guilty and released after receiving conditional sentences based on plea agreements reached with the prosecution.
The prosecution claimed that Abdaladze obtained minutes of a meeting between Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov and the Georgian leadership. In his videotaped confession statement Abdaladze, who was asked by one of his lawyers how he managed to obtain this secret document, he said that under the pretext that his computer was not working and was not able to copy photos, he was able to gain access to another computer in the Foreign Ministry from where he managed to obtain the document.
Speaking at a regular Monday press conference on July 25, Deputy Foreign Minister Nino Kalandadze said that that the ministry “is studying possible shortcomings, which might have been in place” in terms of protecting confidential documents. She, however, ruled out holding any of the ministry’s employees responsible.
“I do not confirm reports that the issue of responsibility may be raised in respect of any person. Generally, after… such facts, the security measures are usually being revised and naturally, the Foreign Ministry will further tighten such measures,” Kalandadze said.
25 Jul. '11 Polnischer Präsident Bronislaw Komorowski besucht Georgien
24 Jul. '11 Georgisches Mädchen nach dem Massaker auf der Insel in Norwegen vermisst
Tamta Liparteliani stammt aus Kutaisi, wie auch Natia Chkhetiani, die das Massaker überlebte.
Tamta Liparteliani, a Georgian girl is among those several people, who are still missing after a gunman killed at least 85 participants of a youth camp on Norway's island of Utøya on Friday.
Native of Kutaisi, Georgia's second largest city in western part of the country, Liparteliani was among around 700 participants of the summer camp organized by the youth wing of the Norway's ruling Labor Party.
Another Georgian participant of the youth camp, Natia Chkhetiani, also from Kutaisi, survived in the attack, which is the worst in Europe since Madrid train bombings in 2004.
Both of them are members of Kutaisi branch of movement Young Socialists of Georgia.
Natia Chkhetiani said the last time when she saw her friend was shortly before the shooting started. Some were jumping into water trying to escape the attack; Natia said she too wanted to follow others, but changed her mind after seeing bullet hitting a boy after jumping into water. She said she did not know whether her friend, Tamta, jumped into the water or not.
Tamta Liparteliani's mother said her doughtier could not swim.
Some reports put number of people who are still missing at four or five.
Police in Norway said they were seeking several missing people and the toll from the island attack could rise, Reuters reported.
The search, using a mini-submarine, will continue for several days, as currents could have carried the bodies some way away from the island, BBC reported.
23 Jul. '11 Anschlag auf das Jungendcamp in Norwegen: zwei Georgierinnen auf der Insel, eine überlebt, eine wird noch verrmisst
Natia Chkhetiani berichtet von der Insel Utøya an Rustavi2, dass sie ihre Freundin Tamta Liparteliani noch kurz vor dem Anschlag gesehen hätte. Die beiden sind Mitglieder der Jungsozialisten Georgiens und nahmen an der Veranstaltung auf der Insel teil. Natia Chkhetiani berichtet, sie habe sich entlang der Küste versteckt, nachdem sie gesehen hatte, wie ein Junge, der ins Wasser gesprungen war erschossen wurde. Sie traute sich selbst nach der Ankunft der Polizei mit Booten nicht sofort aus dem Versteck, da der Angreifer selbst eine Polizeiuniform trug. ...
A Georgian girl is among survivors and another girl from Georgia is missing after at least 84 people were shot dead by a gunman disguised as a policeman at a youth summer camp on Norway's island of Utøya.
Natia Chkhetiani, who survived in the attack, told Georgia's Rustavi 2 TV by phone from Oslo late on Saturday, that last time she saw her friend, Tamta Liparteliani, was shortly before the shooting began.
The two are members of the movement, Young Socialists of Georgia, and were among around 700 participants of the summer camp on island of Utøya organized by the youth wing of the Norway's ruling Labor Party.
Natia Chkhetiani said that after the shooting started she saw some young people jumping into water to escape hail of bullets; she said she also wanted to jump into water, but changed her mind after seeing how one boy was hit by bullet after jumping into water. She said she was hiding from one place to another mainly , along the rocky shore of the island. Chkhetiani also said that after the police boats arrived, she and some others hiding with her were still afraid to come out of hiding as the attacker himself was in the police uniform.
The Georgian embassy in Denmark, which covers Norway, said it was in contact with the Norwegian police trying to find out the fate of another Georgian girl.
President Saakashvili said in a letter of condolence to Norway's Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, that "this terrible atrocity once again reminds us that terrorism remains one of the main common challenges of the world today".
"For its solution, we have to strengthen our common efforts in order to ensure peace and stability in the world", Saakashvili the letter says.
23 Jul. '11 Ex-Verteidigungsminister Irakli Okruashvili Defense kritisiert seinen ehemaligen Verbündeten Levan Gachechiladze scharf und nennt ihn einen "Verräter" im Zusammenhang mit den Protesten im Mai
In einem Interview mit Maestro TV äußert er sich aus seinem franz. Asyl zu den Plänen, wie im Juni die Regierung Saakashvili "zu einem Ende gebracht" hätte werden sollen. Die konkreten Pläne seiner Rückkehr nach Georgien und eines Szenarios zur Ausführung der Tat seien durch Levan Gachechiladze verraten worden. ...
Er kritisierte auch Ex-Parlamentssprecherin Nino Burjanadze: “Ich habe nie Hochachtung vor ihr gehabt. Sie hat nie gerade mal 0.1 Gramm Gehirn gehabt.”...
Ex-defense minister and co-founder of the opposition Georgian Party, Irakli Okruashvili, said failure of his party “to put an end” to President Saakashvili’s government this May was a result of “treason” by his former ally Levan Gachechiladze, who until early June was co-leader of the Georgian Party.
During the street protests in late May, Okruashvili, who lives in France after being granted political asylum there three years ago, announced about the intention to arrive in Georgia “to put an end to the Saakashvili’s regime.” Few days after that announcement Okruashvili, however, said he was dropping plans to return.
“A very concrete plan of my arrival existed,” Okruashvili said in an interview with Tbilisi-based Maestro TV, recorded in Paris and aired on July 22. “There was a concrete scenario to accomplish the deed – that is hitting such a blow to the authorities that would have put an end to these authorities.”
“The reason why this scenario has failed and the reason why I was not able to return to Georgia is treason,” he said. “This scenario – when and how I was returning and we were planning – was revealed and passed to the authorities… There is one person whom you can bluntly call a traitor – that is Levan Gachechiladze.”
Okruashvili, who is wanted in Georgia as three years ago was sentenced to eleven-year prison in absentia, is now facing separate, new charges in Georgia. In June he was charged with formation of illegal armed group.
Okruashvili said that new charges against him were “ridiculous” and “fabrication.” He accused authorities of “repressions” against people affiliated with him, saying that the police arrested about 26 people for fabricated charges “just because they were my friends.”
He acknowledged that the failure of the Georgian Party to live up to its promise of “putting an end to the Saakashvili’s regime” was a blow for him and the Georgian Party. He said his party now needs to recover from this damage, which would take several months.
“By mid or late September we will know whether or not we will be able to recover by end of autumn,” Okruashvili said.
In the same interview he criticized ex-parliamentary speaker Nino Burjanadze, who led the street protests in May, which came to a violent end after riot police broke it. Okruashvili said of Burjanadze: “I’ve never held her in high regard; she has never had even 0.1 grams of brain.”
In the interview with Maestro TV, Okruashvili also slammed U.S. ambassador to Georgia, John Bass, suggesting that the latter’s remarks hours before the demonstration was broken up on May 26 amounted to giving a green light to the authorities to use force against protesters.
“The break up of the May [26 protest rally] and other misfortunes happing today in the country – I mean repressions – is first and foremost on conscience of John Bass,” Okruashvili said.
A similar allegation was voiced earlier by chairman of the Georgian Party Sozar Subari. The U.S. ambassador said in early June that such allegations were “unfounded”.
22 Jul. '11 EU-Erweiterungskommissar Stefan Füle: 'Weitere Untersuchung zu den Ereignissen am 26.Mai notwendig'
EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighborhood Policy, Stefan Füle, said on July 22, that further investigation was needed into excessive use of force against protesters when the riot police broke up anti-government rally in Tbilisi on May 26.
“What happened in May in Tbilisi during the protest rally must never happen again,” Füle said in his address to an international conference Georgia's European Way in Batumi.
“I know an investigation into these events has been conducted but I believe further investigation into these events is needed to ensure that those responsible for excessive use of force and losses of human lives are held accountable for any eventual wrong doings,” Füle said.
22 Jul. '11 EU-Erweiterungskommissar Stefan Füle über demokratische Reformen in Georgien
22 Jul. '11 EU-Erweiterungskommissar Stefan Füle hält Rede auf der Batumi-Konferenz
As prepared
8th International Conference on 'Georgia's European Way'
Batumi, Georgia, 22 July 2011
Mr President, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am happy to be here in Batumi with you today. Batumi is a fine symbol of the great Georgian hospitality that I enjoy so much and remember so fondly from this same conference two years ago.
I am also happy to be here to discuss openly Georgia’s European way and its aspirations, needs and practices.
Let me first briefly present to you the main results of the European Neighbourhood Policy review. This can be summed up in four ideas: deep democracy, mutual accountability, conditionality and differentiation, or the "more for more" approach.
Through this renewed approach, the EU agrees to provide greater support to partners engaged in building deep and sustainable democracy, to boost inclusive economic development and to strengthen both the Eastern and the Southern dimensions of the ENP, in particular in the areas of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. This increased support will depend on the willingness of partners to engage and their progress towards reforms.
There is a specific dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy for the East - the Eastern Partnership that serves as the platform for engagement with Georgia and other neighbours in the Eastern parts of Europe.
How will this renewed approach be translated into the Eastern Partnership?
Within the limits of the time available, let me give you just four elements that I consider essential:
First, the Association Agreements: these are being negotiated with our Eastern partners and will remain the cornerstone of our relationship. However, in some cases, these far reaching and very complex agreements take a long time to negotiate. Under this renewed policy, we will need to identify tools that will allow us to bridge these long periods and intensify engagement with our partners.
Second, Civil Society and its role in pursuing the goals of the Eastern Partnership. The Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum and its National Platforms are essential to promote the Eastern Partnership’s values, and we should strengthen their involvement. I am personally committed to additional support being provided to civil society in partner countries. For this purpose, we intend to establish a Civil Society Facility and a European Endowment for Democracy, in order to consolidate the role of civil society actors, including those which have not been able to benefit from EU support so far. I will also encourage the EU delegations in partner countries to launch a structured political dialogue with National Platforms.
Third, conflicts: comprehensive and concerted use of the whole toolbox that is now at the EU's disposal will allow us to contribute meaningfully to the resolution of protracted conflicts existing in Eastern Partnership countries.
Fourth, enhanced regional cooperation: it was actually President Saakashvili who had inspired us to seriously consider developping a forum for regular interaction between Eastern Partnership countries and the EU at the appropriate level and on a wide range of issues, creating a better connection between bilateral and multilateral tracks of the Eastern Partnership.
The greatest challenge now lies in the implementation of this ambitious renewed policy. We will look into how we jointly – and I underline the word "jointly" - implement it at the upcoming Eastern Partnership summit in Warsaw. And I will be looking forward to our fruitful discussion there to which this conference is a prelude.
Let me now turn to the specific case of Georgia, and its European way.
Georgia has made its choice for closer integration with the European Union. The relationship between Georgia and the EU is gradually developing into a close, strong and dynamic partnership based on clear common objectives. Good progress has been made on negotiations for the Association Agreement. We need to move forward towards free trade and more freedom of movement. None of this is easy and many technical difficulties need to be solved before the objectives can become reality.
But this European choice is above anything the choice of adherence to the universal values of democracy, respect for human rights and rule of law. In this respect, Georgia has already embarked on a solid path of reform and has made impressive progress since the Rose Revolution in 2003.
However, there is much still to be done.
Democracy in Georgia needs to be consolidated. There needs to be a clear system of checks and balances. There needs to be a more tolerant and pluralistic political culture.
What happened in May in Tbilisi during the protest rally must never happen again. I know an investigation into these events has been conducted but I believe further investigation into these events is needed to ensure that those responsible for excessive use of force and losses of human lives are held accountable for any eventual wrong doings.
Furthermore, democracy in Georgia needs to be more inclusive. Next year's parliamentary elections and the 2013 presidential elections demand a level playing field to be truly successful. These elections will be important test cases for Georgian democracy. In the meantime, all the political forces and also civil society representatives should engage together on the reform of the electoral system.
The other fundamental foundation for democratic development is the independence of justice. Political influence over the judicial system cannot be tolerated anywhere and this is something the European Union monitors closely, and here also I believe there is room for improvement in Georgia.
Second, let me continue to what remains to be done at a socio-economic level.
Batumi is a great example of how Georgia is developing swiftly. However, I believe there is another Georgia beyond the splendid boulevards of Batumi. A Georgia that needs sustainable growth. A Georgia that needs to reduce social and regional inequalities. A Georgia that needs to create jobs for its workers and higher standards of living for its people. This is the European way. If Georgia seriously chooses to pursue this way, it needs to undergo very comprehensive and resolute reforms. But at the end of this journey, there will be sustainable, balanced and long term development for everyone.
The last element that I would like to emphasise here is conflict resolution. The European Union’s position on this is well known. We support the security, stability, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia. We will continue to oppose border changes brought about through use of military force. We will continue to engage in conflict resolution through deploying the full range of our instruments (namely financial assistance, Geneva International discussions, the European Union Monitoring Mission and the soon-to-be-appointed new Special Representative). All these elements of support together provide for the security and stability of Georgia.
Georgia itself is engaging in the process. It plays a constructive role in the Geneva discussions. President Saakashvili made a non-use-of-force commitment in front of the European Parliament last November and we have all welcomed it.
However, in order to reach reconciliation, serious and genuine engagement with the communities of the breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia is essential. The European Union and the international community can do their part, but it is mostly up to Georgia itself to find ways to build bridges. Isolation is no alternative. Georgia must show to these communities, now divided by conflict, that they are an integral part of Georgian society and will also benefit from closer political approximation and economic integration with the European Union. Let us do everything possible together so that people from both sides of the Administrative Border Line can again safely travel, trade and invest beyond that line. It is a way how to extend the benefits of European path to all communities, to all Georgians.
To conclude, let me confirm that I am a strong believer in Georgia’s European way, and in a democratic, prosperous and reunited Georgia. Sharing the universal values of human rights, democracy and the rule of law. Offering its citizens all the benefits of modern European society. It might not be an easy choice for this country - Georgia needs to balance its geopolitical interests. It might not be the easiest possible way, but let me assure you that the European way is the real route to political and economic stability for this country.
We are determined to work towards these goals, and we hope that together, as genuine partners, we can achieve them.
I look forward to today's discussions being fruitful, and many thanks to all those involved in organising the event – particularly my friend Gia Baramidze. Thank you for your attention.
22 Jul. '11 Fotographen schuldig gesprochen, frei wegen Strafprozessvereinbarung
22 Jul. '11 In Bildern: gemeinsame Militärübungen Georgien-USA
22 Jul. '11 Büro des Staatsanwalts hat einer Strafprozessvereinbarung im Fall aller drei verhafteten Fotographen zugestimmt
Haftstrafen von 2-3 Jahren für die Fotografen Zurab Kurtsikidze, Giorgi Abdaladze und Irakli Gedenidze, sowie ein halbes Jahr für Gedenidze’s Ehefrau Natia Gedenidze.
The prosecutor’s office said on July 22 it had agreed plea bargain terms with arrested photographers, charged with espionage, and had requested the court to approve those plea agreements.
Under the terms of the plea agreements all three photographers now remaining in the police custody will be released after receiving conditional jail sentence.
According to the motion filed to the court, the prosecution request two-year conditional sentence for Zurab Kurtsikidze, a photographer for the Frankfurt-based European Pressphoto Agency (EPA).
The prosecution wants three-year conditional sentence for Giorgi Abdaladze, a freelancer who also was a contract photographer with the Georgian Foreign Ministry and also worked as a stringer for the Associated Press.
Irakli Gedenidze, personal photographer for President Saakashvili, will receive three-year conditional sentence, according to the plea agreement terms.
Gedenidze’s wife, Natia Gedenidze, also a photojournalist arrested in connection to the same case on July 7 but released on bail two days later, will receive six-month conditional sentence, according to the proposed plea agreement.
Plea agreement – a widespread practice in Georgia’s criminal justice system often criticized by human rights groups –means that the case will no longer be heard in substance through main court hearing.
The prosecution says in its motion to the court that it had decided to agree on plea agreements after the accused cooperated with the investigation during which they provided Georgia’s counter-intelligence service “names of some agents” working for the Russian intelligence.
“Zurab Kurtsikidze, Giorgi Abdaladze and Irakli Gedenidze not only pleaded guilty, but they also voluntarily and timely informed the Ministry of Internal Affairs’ Counter-Intelligence Department about the names of some agents of Russian Federation’s special services and the persons having confidential links with them, as well as information about concrete intelligence operational tasks of those agencies; methods, tactics and organization of intelligence gathering and passing process and also information about organizations acting under cover of [the Russian intelligence services]. All these [information] provides a possibility to identify, prevent and neutralize possible threats to the Georgian state interests,” the prosecution says in its motion to the court.
“It is noteworthy, that after revealing the mentioned information, the situation has changed and Zurab Kurtsikidze, Giorgi Abdaladze, as well as Irakli Gedenidze and Natia Gedenidze no longer pose a threat to the society,” the prosecution said.
The prosecution said that apart of confession statements made by the accused, the investigation obtained number of other evidence to prove its case against the photographers.
The Chief Prosecutor’s Office released through its website on July 22 several confidential documents with blacked-out words and phrases, claimed to be retrieved as a result of search from the houses of the accused photographers.
The prosecution said that the counter-intelligence unit found that Irakli Gedenidze, the President Saakashvili’s personal photographer possessed plan of security measures approved by Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili for the visit of the Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves to Georgia earlier this month. It also said that Gedenidze kept list with personal information and data of employees of a state company provided various services to the governmental agencies, as well as list of cleaners working in the presidential administration.
The prosecution claims that Giorgi Abdaladze, a freelancer who also was a contract photographer with the Georgian Foreign Ministry and also worked as a stringer for the Associated Press, kept a transcripts of conversations of Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov with President Saakashvili and PM Nika Gilauri during his visit to Georgia in mid-June. The transcripts, major part of which is blacked-out, was posted on the Chief Prosecutor’s website. The prosecution said that Abdaladze also kept list of Georgian citizens working in Georgia’s UN, OSCE missions, as well as in representation to the Council of Europe.
The prosecution said that copies of documents found in possession of Abdaladze and Gedenidze were also kept by Zurab Kurtsikidze, a photographer for EPA. The Chief Prosecutor’s Office also posted on its website what it said was telephone records through which the investigation was claiming that Kurtsikidze was in contact with the Russian intelligence officers in 2004.
According to Georgia’s criminal procedure code, plea agreement between prosecution and defense is approved by court decision and judge should make sure that the plea bargain deal is not concluded upon coercion; the judge should also examine the evidence supporting the charges. In the majority of cases judges approve plea agreements.
Some lawyers from the defense teams of Abdaladze and Kurtsikidze have said that their clients’ confession statements were “not made upon their free will” and claimed that they confessed as a result of “psychological pressure”.
22 Jul. '11 Russlands Flughafenbetreiber Novaport übernimmt Flughafen außerhalb von Suchumi im abtrünnigen Abchasien
Russian airport operator, Novaport, will take over airport outside Sokhumi, breakaway Abkhazia's capital, according to a preliminary deal, detailed terms of which have yet to be specified in planned contract.
Memorandum of understanding "in the sphere of reconstruction and use of airspace of the Republic of Abkhazia for the international air communication" was signed between the breakaway region's PM Sergey Shamba and general director of Novaport, Mikhail Smirnov, in Sokhumi on July 21, Abkhaz news agency, Apsnipress, reported.
Novaport is a daughter company of Russia's privately-owned investment conglomerate, AEON Corporation, which is founded by Roman Trotsenko; the latter is now the president of Russia's state-run United Shipbuilding Corporation.
Novaport runs seven airports in Russia's cities of Novosibirsk, Chelyabinsk, Barnaul, Tomsk, Chita, Volgograd and Astrakhan.
Shamba said after signing of the memorandum, that the Abkhaz authorities would sign a long-term lease agreement with the company on mutually beneficial terms, details of which would be elaborated later.
"We will decide on [details of contract terms] later on as we will be developing investment agreement. Strategically important issue is that runaways are impossible to either sell or lease. As far as infrastructure is concerned that will be negotiated," Shamba said.
"We have studied airport's infrastructure. The runaway, aircraft parking platform are in a satisfactory condition and do not require any major renovation. As far as airport terminal, refueling complexes, airport lighting and air control systems are concerned - all these requires to be done from scratch," Smirnov said.
He also said that it would take 12-14 months to build this infrastructure and  it would take 8 years for investments to pay off; amount of required investment was not reported.
21 Jul. '11 Regierung plant die Versteigerung der Nutzungsrechte für vier Jahre am Fernsehturm in Tbilisi in einer Online-Auktion
21 Jul. '11 The Batumi Conference – Zwei Monate vor dem Gipfel zur "östlichen Partnerschaft"
Author: Stefan Füle,  EU Commissioner  for Enlargement and European neighbourhood Policy
This July, like in previous years, friends of Georgia from all over Europe will gather in Batumi for what has become a regular feature of our relationship. The 8th ‘Georgia’s European Way‘ Conference takes place this week and is set to be yet a not-to-be-missed event for those who build, day after day, negotiation after negotiation, the European future of Georgia.
The choice that Georgia has made to work towards integration with Europe is a source of pride and hope. It is a source of pride because it is not an easy choice. It requires resolute reforms to take place now. It is also a source of hope because no one can doubt that the benefits will be there. The choice of democracy and the rule of law, the choice of an open economy are the essential elements of stability and prosperity. Recent events in the Southern Mediterranean show us that these values are increasingly seen by citizens, wherever they live, as their own.    
The relationship between Georgia and the European Union is close, strong and dynamic, and it is based on clear common objectives, namely the consolidation of democracy and the affirmation of territorial integrity. We need to move on many fronts, including towards free trade and more freedom of movement. None of this is easy these days, and many technical difficulties need to be solved before the objective can become a tangible reality. What matters most is that we are making progress, and that we are more than ever determined to push forward.
The 2011 edition of the Batumi Conference comes at a crucial time. At the end of September leaders of Georgia and the other countries of the Eastern Partnership will meet in Warsaw with their European Union counterparts.
The Eastern Partnership countries and the European Union have deep common interests. It is important that leaders jointly and openly discuss their challenges, share ideas and give new directions to their joint efforts. But we need to move beyond discussions. We need to renew the commitment made in Prague in 2009 when the Eastern Partnership was launched, to embrace our shared values of democracy and the rule of law. And we have to build on what has been achieved since Prague to do much more, much better, together, in a spirit of mutual accountability.
The role of the Eastern Partnership Summit in Warsaw will be to open new avenues of cooperation. We need to deepen our interaction in many sectors where our interests are closely knit, such as transport and energy. We must also ensure that citizens in our partner countries can take advantage as much as possible of the various initiatives and programmes that the European Union has put in place for its own citizens and which have been very successful. These are only a few examples.
All this needs to be done with societies at large, not just governments. We need to promote interaction between our people. They have so much to share; they have so much to learn from each other. The Eastern Partnership will benefit from the input of two side-events that will bring together representatives of civil society and business actors, so that their voices are heard, and their concerns acted upon.
The Warsaw Summit must be a step that gets us closer to our goal, which is to ensure that our European continent, once divided, grows together again. We will reach that goal step by step and it may take a bit of time. What keeps us all going is that one day we will be able to move freely across the whole continent, to trade, to work and to enjoy life, to interact in all sorts of ways. This will be the best guarantee that the very fabric of our continent has been restored and will stand the test of time.
21 Jul. '11 EU-Kommissar für Erweiterung, Stefan Füle, besucht Georgien
Stefan Füle, the EU commissioner for enlargement and European neighborhood policy, is visiting Georgian on July 21-22 on the occasion of the eighth international conference Georgia's European Way in Black Sea resort town of Batumi.
During the visit Füle will meet with President Saakashvili; Secretary of National Security Council Secretary Giga Bokeria; State Minister for Euro-Atlantic Integration Giorgi Baramidze; State Minister for Reintegration Eka Tkeshelashvili; Deputy Foreign Minister Tornike Gordadze,  who is Georgia’s chief negotiator in Association Agreement talks with EU; as well as opposition and civil society representatives.
“The choice that Georgia has made to work towards integration with Europe is a source of pride and hope,” Füle wrote in his opinion piece ahead of visit to Georgia. “It is a source of pride because it is not an easy choice. It requires resolute reforms to take place now.”
“It is also a source of hope because no one can doubt that the benefits will be there. The choice of democracy and the rule of law, the choice of an open economy are the essential elements of stability and prosperity. Recent events in the Southern Mediterranean show us that these values are increasingly seen by citizens, wherever they live, as their own,” Füle wrote.
21 Jul. '11 Partei des Geschäftsmannes Beslan Butba unterstützt Sergey Shamba in abchasischen Wahlen zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh
21 Jul. '11 Anwalt: Einer der verhafteten Fotographen wünscht eine Strafprozessvereinbarung
21 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili zum Bekämpfen der 'Sklavenmentalität, eingeimpft durch Russland'
President Saakashvili said that major development projects in Batumi and other parts of the country was contributing to destruction of "slave mentality", which Russia was planting for years to make Georgians believe that they are losers.
Saakashvili made the remarks while speaking at a ceremony of opening Radisson Blu hotel in Georgia's Black Sea resort of Batumi on July 20.
"Today is a historic day for this city and a very important day for Georgia's most important sector - tourism." he said. "Not only an architectural masterpiece is being opened here, but, what is the most important, something that will really turn into a symbol of Georgia's success, Georgia's development and Georgia's better future."
He said the new Radisson hotel in Batumi would be followed by other international brands like Holiday Inn, Kempinski, Novotel, Hilton, Conrad, Ritz-Carlton and others.
"I am saying this for those, who do not believe, that it is possible to do it in Georgia and for those who do not believe, that Georgia is really a special country," he said.
Saakashvili said that skeptics, who do not believe that it would be possible to turn Batumi or other places in Georgia into European standard resorts, "are classical archetypes of a slave created by Russia in Georgia."
Saakashvili said that this "slave mentality", involving a wrong notion as if Georgians "are the most retarded and losers" was "planted into our brains" for hundreds of years by Russia. He said construction and major facelift process ongoing in Georgia was now destroying this mentality.
"By the way I was in Nice [France] few days ago for a business meeting and I want to tell you, that even already today Batumi with number of components - public spaces, cultural centers, green space... is better then Nice and in two-three years it [Batumi] will be better than Nice and Cannes with all the other parameters too," Saakashvili said.
He said that population in Batumi would increase to 200,000 by early next year and to 500,000 by 2015. Currently about 124,000 people live in Batumi, according to the state statistics office.
"My goal is to make all these developments irreversible," Saakashvili said. 
"The country, whose territory's 20% is occupied, the country which is threatened every day... has turned into an example of the most dynamic development and reforms in the world. It happens because the government is not stealing, not a single minister, thier deputies or gamgebeli [head of the provincial districts] are corrupt... and if there is still someone who is [corrupt], we will find a proper place for them," he said.
21 Jul. '11 Drei Kandidaten zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh bestehen Prüfung in abchasischer Sprache
20 Jul. '11 Zentralbank reduziert Leitzins auf 7.75%
20 Jul. '11 Group Wants Clarity over Photographers’ Case Classification
20 Jul. '11 Anstieg des Geldtransfers aus dem Ausland auf 509.5 Mio. USD im 1.Halbjahr
20 Jul. '11 Ex-Finanzminister Kakha Baindurashvili neuer Präsident der Kammer für Handel und Industrie
20 Jul. '11 US-Außenministerium benennt neuen Mann für den Kaukasus: Eric Rubin
19 Jul. '11 US-Marines und georgische Soldaten führen gemeinsame zwei-wöchige Übungen durch in der Vaziani-Militärbasis nahe Tbilisi
19 Jul. '11 Stellvertretende Außenministerin Nino Kalandadze zu den vorgezogenen Wahlen in Abchasien
“Wahlen werden unter den Bedingungen der Besatzung abgehalten ...”
19 Jul. '11 Sechs oppositionelle Abgeordnete schließen sich zu einer neuen Fraktion zusammen unter dem Vorsitz von Gia Tsagareishvili
18 Jul. '11 Außenminister Vashadze 'unzufrieden mit unbegründeten Fragen', gestellt von Journalistenn zum Fall der Fotographen
18 Jul. '11 Büro des Staatsanwalts veröffentlicht Schuldeingeständnis des Fotographen Giorgi Abdaladze
18 Jul. '11 Georgische Botschaft in Kiev entschuldigt sich für den Vorfall beim Oben-Ohne-Protest
18 Jul. '11 Drei Kandidaten nehmen an den Wahlen zur Nachfolge von Sergey Bagapsh in Abchasien teil: Alexander Ankvab; Sergey Shamba Raul Khajimbas
18 Jul. '11 Ukrainian Topless Protest on Arrested Photographers Case
18 Jul. '11 Behörden nehmen Zwangsräumungen von intern Vertriebene in Tbilisi wieder auf
18 Jul. '11 Media Outlets' Protest Over Photographers Case
18 Jul. '11 UPDATE: Fall der Fotographen endet vielleicht in einer Strafprozessvereinbarung
17 Jul. '11 Ombudsmann Giorgi Tugushi trifft verhaftete Fotographen
16 Jul. '11 Verhafteter Fotograf Giorgi Abdaladze macht 'Schuldanerkenntnis'
16 Jul. '11 Tbilisi verurteilt den Besuch des russ. Verteidigungsministers Lavrov in Sokhumi
Der Besuch in Abchasien zeige, dass Russland nie beabsichtigt habe, seine Waffenstillstandsverpflichtungen von 2008 zu erfüllen. ...
15 Jul. '11 Innenministerium: 'Untersuchungen im Fall der Fotographen nahe dem Ende'
Die Verhandlung wird vorwiegend öffentlich abgehalten werden.
15 Jul. '11 Innenministerium: Vier Polizisten entlassen wegen der Ereignisse des 26.Mai
15 Jul. '11 'Leben in der Vorhölle' - 71-seitiger Bericht von Human Rights Watch zu Gali
Arbitrary interference by the Abkhaz authorities with the rights of ethnic Georgians living in Gali district of the breakaway region has been “a serious obstacle for a larger scale, sustainable returns” of displaced people, according to a report by the Human Rights Watch released on July 15.
The 71-page report documents key human rights concerns for the Georgians of Gali, involving “discriminatory” system for enjoying range of civil and political rights, as well as restrictions on freedom of movement and access to Georgian-language education.
“Ethnic Georgians from Gali overwhelmingly conveyed to Human Rights Watch a sense of acute vulnerability to theft, kidnapping for ransom, armed robbery, extortion and other crimes,” reads the report, which is also based on interviews with more than hundred of Gali residents conducted on both sides of the administrative border.
The New-York based rights group said that a failure from the Abkhaz authorities to recognize and protect rights of ethnic Georgian returnees in Gali district would “at best cause tens of thousands of people to live in a constant state of anxiety and limbo” and “at worst, it could force large numbers of Abkhazia’s ethnic Georgians to leave their homes forever.”
About 45,000 or 47,000 Georgians are believed to have returned to Gali district spontaneously. The report notes that there is no reliable system of registering returnees.
Commuting back and forth across the administrative boundary line is important for many Georgians in Gali, because while they may live in the breakaway region, they visit relatives, receive Georgian government’s social benefits, medical care and in some cases attend schools on the other side of the administrative border, mainly in Zugdidi district.
“However, since August 2008 the Abkhaz authorities have restricted returnees’ ability to commute across the boundary by eliminating three of the four ‘official’ crossing points, and by requiring special crossing permits for those who do not possess Abkhaz passports,” according to the report.
Those willing to obtain special crossing permits have to go to the town of Gali – an expensive, time-consuming and burdensome process for those living in the villages of the district. The report brings an example in which if a resident of Pirveli Otabaia village, which is less than two kilometers from the administrative border, wants to get such crossing permit, it will require a resident to make 28-km drive to the town of Gali, which will take two hours because of road’s poor condition.
The permit costs 100 rubles, or about USD 3.5, but in fact anyone willing to cross the administrative border has to pay twice more in a form of bribe, according to the report; if the necessary documents expired then the bribe can be up to USD 35 for crossing the administrative border on the Enguri bridge, which is now regarded by the Abkhaz authorities as the only “legal” crossing point.
“Abkhaz border guards do sometimes solicit bribes from Gali residents to sneak them through Russian patrols at unofficial border crossings,” according to the report.
The authorities in Abkhazia say that restrictions on movement is a temporary measure and there would be five “legal border crossing points” after the Russian border guards complete development of the border infrastructure.
The Human Rights Watch says that access to Georgian-language education for ethnic Georgians in Gali district “is also restricted.”
“Access to Georgian-language education was a primary concern to most of those interviewed by Human Rights Watch in Gali district and largely influences their decision about whether to stay in Gali or leave,” the report says.
In upper Gali district, according to the report, Russian gradually replaced Georgian as the main language of instruction. Several schools in upper Gali, however, continue to unofficially teach in Georgian, except when they are inspected by the local authorities.
“[These schools] keep two registries, one in Russian and the other in Georgian. However teachers and principals risk disciplinary action, including dismissal, for doing this,” the report says.
Eleven schools in lower Gali district continue to teach in Georgian, which is permitted by the local authorities mainly because they do not have the resources to provide those schools with Russian-speaking teachers, according to the report. But their future status as Georgian-language schools remains uncertain.
“Teachers and parents worry that as the Abkhaz authorities devote more resources to ensuring Russian as the language of instruction in all schools in Gali, Georgian-language schools will disappear altogether,” the report says.
The report also says that although the Abkhaz authorities emphasize that they do not compel anyone to obtain Abkhaz citizenship, “by putting in place a system that requires an individual to obtain the Abkhaz passport in order to enjoy certain rights, the authorities are arbitrarily interfering with those rights.”
15 Jul. '11 Georgischer und ukrainischer Außenminister treffen sich in Tbilisi
14 Jul. '11 Außenminister Grigol Vashadze zum Fall der verhafteten Fotographen
Einer der Verhafteten sei vom Außenministerium angestellt worden, hatte keinen autorisierten Zugang zu geheimen Dokumenten, aber hätte sich solchen Zugang illegal verschaffen können, da er Computer des Menisteriums benutzte.
14 Jul. '11 50.7 Mio. Euro EU-Hilfe für Georgien
14 Jul. '11 Ukrainischer Außenminister Konstantine Grishchenko besucht Georgien
14 Jul. '11 Russ. Verteidigungsminister Lavrov: im WTO-Abkommen Georgien und Russland sei 'vieles ausführbar'
Transparency of trade across Russia’s border with Abkhazia and South Ossetia “can be ensured the way which satisfies everyone,” Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, said on July 12 in Washington, while commenting on the Swiss-mediated WTO talks between Tbilisi and Moscow.
Asked about Tbilisi’s demand for international monitoring of dispute border and whether he believed that WTO-related issue could be resolved with Georgia, Lavrov responded: “If we all concentrate on WTO rules and do not go beyond those rules into some politics, yes it's very much doable.”
“We responded positively to the Swiss proposal to mediate those Russian-Georgian discussions to finalize the WTO issues,” the Russian Foreign Minister said in Washington on July 12, while speaking at an event co-hosted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the Russian embassy in the U.S.
“The Swiss produced a paper for the Georgians and us to consider,” he continued. “I think the paper is logical and conceptually it's right, because it does not deviate from WTO agenda problem.”
“The customs control on the Russian borders can be transparent. This is what the Swiss suggested. And this transparency can be ensured the way which satisfies everyone. I don’t want to go into the details. But yes, if politics don't interfere, it's not very difficult to do,” Lavrov said.
Georgian and Russian negotiators held third round of the Swiss-mediated talks over terms of Russia’s WTO accession in Geneva on July 9-10 in which, according to the Georgian Foreign Ministry, experts of customs affairs were also invited.
On July 8, just before the third round of talks, President Saakashvili said in an interview with the Ekho Moskvy radio station, that accepting Tbilisi's demand for international monitoring of trade across disputed border will be "minimal price" for Russia to pay for joining.
He said that the World Customs Organization (WCO), EU or any regional organization, "where there are at least several serious countries", could be chosen for carrying out monitoring on border crossing points at Psou and Roki Tunnel in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, respectively.
“We do not want to resolve all of our problems at the expense of [Russia's] WTO [accession]," Saakashvili said. "We understand it very well that we should not expect any serious changes for better under the present leadership in Russia and we should not expect de-occupation of our territories unless present stance is maintained in the Kremlin."
"But we would like that any of the international organization... to control movement of goods across the Georgian borders [in breakaway Abkhazia and South Ossetia], which are recognized by the entire responsible international community," he said.
"I think this is a minimal price for Russia to pay" for joining WTO, Saakashvili added.
After a meeting between U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Washington on July 13, the White House said that President Obama “reaffirmed his strong support for Russia’s efforts to complete its WTO accession process this year.”
U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, said after meeting with his Russian counterpart on July 13, that Washington “strongly support[s]” Russia’s WTO membership.
“Russia’s membership would allow us to increase trade and deepen our economic ties. This is a high priority, and a priority for President Obama and the Administration. It’s part of our broader global effort to promote a rules-based system of economic competition,” she said.
14 Jul. '11 Russischer Verteidigungsminister Lavrov besucht Abchasien
14 Jul. '11 EU begrüßt die Gesetzesänderung zum Status rel. Minderheiten
13 Jul. '11 Transparency Pledged in Photographers' Trial
13 Jul. '11 Parteien, die an der Reform des Wahlsystems arbeiten, werden zur Transparenz aufgerufen
13 Jul. '11 Staatsanwaltskanzlei: außer 'kleinen Teilen' wird die Verhandlung um den Fall der Fotographen öffentlich sein
13 Jul. '11 Chefunterhändeler Giga Bokeria zu den Genfer Gesprächen
Die Gespräche seien in einer Sackgasse wegen Russlands Terrorkampagnen gegen Georgien. Trotz der wenigen Resultate ist Tbilisi dennoch für die Fortsetzung. ...
13 Jul. '11 Vorsitzender des nat. Sicherhbeitsrates Giga Bokeria zum Fall der verhafteten Fotographen
"Die Konspiratonstheorien, als ob die Verhaftung der Fotografen eine Kampagne gegen die freien Medien oder eine Beschränkung der freien Medien sei, sind vollkommen unverständlich für mich ..."
12 Jul. '11 Fotos: Protest der Journalisten zum Fall der verhafteten Fotographen
12 Jul. '11 Moskau erklärt, dass die verhafteten Fotographen 'Geiseln der anti-russischen Paranoia' seien
12 Jul. '11 US-Außenministerium äußert sich zum Fall der verhafteten georgischen Fotographen
12 Jul. '11 Sprecherin des Präsidenten Manana Manjgaladze: 'Wir schätzen die festen Beziehungen zur Kirche'
12 Jul. '11 Sprecherin des Präsidenten Manana Manjgaladze: Verhaftung des persönlichen Fotographen sei 'ein sehr bedauerlicher Umstand' für Präsident Saakashvili
12 Jul. '11 Ombudsmann Giorgi Tugushi zum Fall der verhafteten Fotographen
11 Jul. '11 Georgisch-orthodoxe Kirche schächt Einstellung ab zur Gesetzesänderung zum Status rel. Minderheiten
11 Jul. '11 Polizei erklärt, EPA-Fotograph sein ein 'Langzeitagent'
11 Jul. '11 CoE Deputy Secretary General Hails Georgia's Move on Religious Groups Status
11 Jul. '11 Russland und Georgien halten WTO-Gespräche
11 Jul. '11 Media Watchdog Coalition Urges for Declassifying Photographers' Case
11 Jul. '11 In Bildern: Protest der georgisch-orthodoxen Kirchenführer
10 Jul. '11Nach Gottesdienst in der Sameba-Kirche am Nachmittag wieder Protestmarsch Gläubiger gegen das Gesetz zum Status religiöser Minderheiten
Patriarch Ilia II. im Gottesdienst: "... Fälle von Angriffen gegen die Kirche und das Verletzen der Kirche sind sehr häufig. ...
Heute wollen wir für unsere Nation und die Kirche predigen, und wir wollen für den Frieden für unsere Behörden und unsere Nation predigen. ..."
Few thousand of people, led by priests from the Georgian Orthodox Church, marched for second day in Tbilisi on Sunday to protest against legislative amendments on legal status of religious minorities in Georgia.
After the Saturday’s protest march, which was one of the largest demonstrations held in Georgia in recent years, Orthodox believers gathered in the Holy Trinity Cathedral to attend a regular Sunday sermon by head of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Ilia II.
“Cases of fighting against the Church and humiliating the Church are very frequent,” Ilia II said in his sermon.
“Those who have ever humiliated the Church are punished and they will definitely be punished … The Church will protect you and give you the strength.”
“Historically the Church has always been protecting Georgia and our faith; the Church has always been a huge force and it still is a huge force. This force is not directed against anyone… This force is for making people happy. So we should take care of the Church,” the Georgian Orthodox Church leader said.
“Today we want to pray for our nation, church and pray for the peace for the authorities and our nation,” Ilia II added.
Few hours after the Patriarch’s sermon, few thousand people, led by the clerics from the Georgian Church, marched towards the Parliament.
By late afternoon the demonstrators arrived on the Rustaveli Avenue; they marched around the Parliament building after which the rally dispersed.
It emerged on Sunday that Holy Synod, a main decision-making body of the Georgian Orthodox Church, will hold a meeting on July 10. The meeting was apparently summoned in order to discuss recent developments surrounding the legislative amendments on religious minority groups’ legal status, which has turned into a source of one of the most serious showdown between the Georgian Orthodox Church and President Saakashvili’s administration.
The Georgian Orthodox Church and its leader, Ilia II, said for number of times in recent days that they were not against of granting legal status to religious minorities. The Georgian Church, however, was calling for thorough and lengthy discussions over the issue and on the other hand it was also insisting that such move should only have been taken if a similar status was granted to the Georgian Orthodox Church in neighboring countries, in particular the focus was made on Armenia.
The Georgian Orthodox Church's multiple calls on the authorities not to hurry with adoption of the legislative amendment went unheeded and it was passed with three readings in a course of five days with second and final voting held on July 5. The bill was signed into law by President Saakashvili on the same day and it went into force next day, on July 6.
10 Jul. '11Presserat der Journalisten, eine selbstorganisierte Körperschaft, plant eine Kundgebung und ruft zur Freigabe des Falls der verhafteten Fotografen auf
Journalistic Ethics Charter Council of Georgia, a self-regulatory body for about couple of hundred journalists united under the ethics charter, plans to hold a rally outside the Interior Ministry on Monday to call for declassifying the case of arrested photojournalists.
“In connection to the photojournalists’ case, the Council will demand a meeting with Interior Minister [Vano Merabishvili] and an immediate declassification of the case,” the group said in a statement, calling on journalists, media organizations and civil society representatives to participate in the rally.
Nino Zuriashvili, an investigative reporter and a member of the press council, said that release by the Interior Ministry of some details of the case against photographers on July 9 further fueled doubts about credibility of the charges brought against the photographers. She told Tbilisi-based Maestro TV, that the case should be declassified as “society’s interest towards it is huge.”
The case of arrested photographers, who have been charged with espionage, has been classified as secret; the trial into the case, which is expected to be launched in September, will be held behind the closed doors. A lawyer for one of the arrested photographers has said that the case really contained state secret materials.
The Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) said on July 9, that one of the arrested photographers, Zurab Kurtsikidze, who was working for the European Pressphoto Agency (EPA), had links with the Russian military intelligence and two others, including President Saakashvili’s personal photographer, were providing him with confidential information, including, among others, photos of technical drawings of the presidential palace and travel routes of Saakashvili.
The Interior Ministry released President Saakashvili’s personal photographer Irakli Gedenidze’s recorded statement to the police, saying that he was “blackmailed” by Kurtsikidze and agreed to provide him not only pool photos of various events, but also some confidential information he was allegedly requesting from Gedenidze. The latter, like two others – Kurtsikidze and Giorgi Abdaladze – were sent to a pre-trial detention; Gedenidze’s wife, Natia Gedenidze, who was also arrested, was released in early hours of July 9. The court said later on the same day that she was released on GEL 10,000 bail because she had “confessed her crime” and because of having two children.
The Interior Ministry also released secretly recorded brief phone conversations in which Kurtsikidze is asking Gedenidze and Abdaladze to send via email their bank account details to transfer them money.
Editor-in-chief of Frankfurt-based EPA, Cengiz Seren, told The Associated Press on July 9, that as part of his work Kurtsikidze “would have had programs of the president's visit and things like that”.
Seren also said that Kurtsikidze was asking his fellow photographers for their banking details so that the agency could wire them money for the photos they took for EPA. Seren said EPA's accountants were going to find all the documents related to any money that was transferred to Kurtsikidze and to other photographers through him and to submit those documents to the Georgian authorities.
In separate comments to Agence France-Presse (AFP)Seren said that he believed the authorities had misinterpreted innocent conversations about payments for photographs.
“They decided this could be a spy ring but of course it is far, far away from that,” he said, adding that the allegations were “very easily provable false” and that he would send evidence from the agency to the Georgian authorities next week.
The Paris-based media watchdog group, Reporters Without Borders, said on July 8 that “utmost transparency is needed to dispel suspicions that these arrests were politically motivated.”
“The authorities obviously have a duty to protect national interests but the current fear of spies in Georgia must not be allowed to fuel a climate of intimidation in the media, and security imperatives must not override democratic principles,” Reporters Without Borders said.
Manana Manjgaladze, the Georgian President’s spokesperson said in a written statement on July 7, that the case was about “a serious leakage of information from our institutions, not about journalism or media activities.”
“The people arrested were not at all known for expressing any political view and it is outrageous to connect their arrest in any way with the question of freedom of media,” she said on July 7.
10 Jul. '11Tausende protestieren am 9.7. wegen des Gesetzes zum Status religiöser Minderheiten
Der Marsch über die Rustaveli Straße wurde von Priestern der georgisch-orthodoxen Kirche angeführt. ...
Thousands of people, led by priests from the Georgian Orthodox Church, marched in Tbilisi on Saturday evening to protest against legislative amendments on status of religious minorities in Georgia.
The demonstration was one of the largest held in Georgia in recent years.
Participants of the demonstration first gathered outside the Kashveti Church on Rustaveli Avenue and then marched towards the Holy Trinity Cathedral, passing outside the presidential palace.
"Expression of our faith and position should be peaceful; that's what the Church is calling on us - to express what we have to say and to make the authorities hear what we have to say; let's believe that they will heed to our calls," senior cleric from the Georgian Orthodox Church, Mitropolitan Daniel, said while addressing people gathered in the Holy Trinity Cathedral.
The head of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Ilia II, made a brief address to the gathering in the cathedral and said, quoting the New Testament: "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find."
Some priests participating in the demonstration were saying the fact that the legislative amendment was passed with "ignorance" of the Georgian Church's position was one of the major source of concern for them.
Echoing remarks by the Georgian Orthodox Church leader, Patriarch Ilia II, many participants of the July 9 rally were saying that the adopted amendments were "dangerous" for the Church and for the country.
The Georgian Orthodox Church's multiple calls on the authorities not to hurry with adoption of the legislative amendment went unheeded and it was passed with three readings in a course of five days with second and final voting held on July 5. The bill was signed into law by President Saakashvili on the same day and it went into force next day, on July 6.
Developments surrounding the legislative amendments, allowing religious minorities to be registered as legal entities of public law, marked one of the most serious public confrontations between the Georgian Church and President Saakashvili's administration.
The Georgian Orthodox Church and its leader, Ilia II, said for number of times in recent days that they were not against of granting legal status to religious minorities. The Georgian Church, however, was calling for thorough and lengthy discussions over the issue and on the other hand it was also insisting that such move should only have been taken if a similar status was granted to the Georgian Orthodox Church in neighboring countries, in particular the focus was made on Armenia.
Gaining legal status has been long sought by some religious minority groups. The issue has also long been a source of criticism by the human rights and international organizations.
In its April, 2011 resolution on the honoring of obligations and commitments by Georgia, the Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe said it was "concerned by the lack of a proper legal status of, and legal protection for, denominations and faiths other than the Georgian Orthodox Church."
The resolution called on Georgia to "adopt a specific law on religion that would offer proper and equal legal status and protection to all faiths and denominations in the country." Although no specific law on religion was adopted, the authorities decided to address the issue through amending civil code by allowing religious minorities to be registered as legal entities of public law.

Holy Trinity Cathedral, July 9. Photo: Guram Muradov/Civil.ge

9 Jul. '11 Innenministerium gibt einige Details des Falls um die verhafteten Fotografen bekannt
The Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) said on July 9, that one of the arrested photographers had links with the Russian military intelligence and two others were providing him with confidential information, including, among others, photos of technical drawings of the presidential palace and travel routes of President Saakashvili.
In a statement the ministry said that Zurab Kurtsikidze, a photographer working for the Frankfurt-based European Pressphoto Agency (EPA), “has links with employees of the Russian Federation’s military intelligence [GRU] A. Sinitsin and S. Okrokov, who are wanted by the Georgian law enforcement agencies for espionage charges.”
Two others, who were charged with espionage and sent to pre-trial detention on July 9, are Irakli Gedenidze, who was a personal photographer of President Saakashvili and Giorgi Abdaladze, a freelancer also working with the Foreign Ministry.
“It has also been found out, that Zurab Kurtsikidze had links with citizens of the Russian Federation to whom arrested people were passing secret information via Zurab Kurtsikidze. In particular, in exchange of monetary compensation Irakli Gedenidze and Giorgi Abdaladze, who were state employees, in the process of performing their professional duties, managed to take pictures of documents, which contained secret information and then to pass them to Kurtsikidze, who in turn was sending this information to Moscow,” the Interior Ministry said.
“During the search, among private belongings of Irakli Gedenidze and Giorgi Abdaladze, as well as after study of files in their computers, photos of technical drawings of part of building of the President’s administration, information about the President’s travel routes, details about the President’s visits and meetings, as well as other information containing secret, have been found,” the Interior Ministry said.
The Interior Ministry has also released a video recording of Irakli Gedenidze’s testimony in which the Georgian President’s pool photographer says that he was offered by Kurtsikidze to provide him with photos of various events involving President Saakashvili in exchange of payment.
“Some time later he asked me to also make captions on these photos in exchange for certain payment; later Zurab [Kurtsikidze] demanded from me to provide other information too, which was beyond my professional duties of taking photos; at that point I realized that it was something to do with special services and my suspicion was further strengthened as I knew that he was sending those photos to Moscow in a photo agency [Kurtsikidze was working with the Frankfurt-based EPA’s Moscow bureau]; I refused and told him that I would not have provided him with those information, but he reminded me about my signatures, which I was making on payments received for providing photos and told me that he would have used those signatures against me; so he used language of blackmail; I got afraid and continued cooperation. After that Zurab requested my bank accounts for money transfers,” Gedenidze said.
Gedenidze’s wife, Natia Gedenidze, also a photojournalist, was arrested together with three others, but she was released early hours of July 9.
The Interior Ministry has also released a secretly recorded phone conversation between Gedenidze and Kurtsikidze in which the latter asks him to send via email his bank account number in order “to transfer money directly from Frankfurt.” In a separate recorded phone conversation with Giorgi Abdaladze, Kurtsikidze also asks him to send his bank account information.
EPA's editor-in-chief, Cengiz Serem, told ABC News on July 7, that Kurtsikidze is “absolutely not” a spy and charges against him were “crazy”.
“They say he sent pictures to Moscow. These were pool pictures and were given to all agencies... The pictures are even vetted by the President before they're sent out.”
He also said that Kurtsikidze had never had troubles with the authorities before. “[He] only covers what he's officially invited to and authorized to do. We do not have that sort of investigative journalism there.”
9 Jul. '11 Drei Fotographen in Untersuchungshaft
9 Jul. '11 Anwalt Natia Gedenidze: ein Fotograf freigelassen, drei angeklagt wegen Spionage
9 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili äußert sich zu dem Spionagefall der Fotografen in seiner Umgebung
President Saakashvili said he was "very upset" when learned that the counter-intelligence agency was planning to arrest his personal photographer, who is accused of passing confidential information to an unspecified spying network.
Irakli Gedenidze and three other photojournalists, including Gedenidze's wife, were arrested overnight on July 7.
In an interview with Ekho Moskvy radio station on July 7, President Saakashvili said he learned about the police intention to detain his personal photographer only half an hour before the arrest.
"I really do not know details of the case," Saakashvili said.
He said, that at the time when he learned about it, "the case has already been done." He added, that was an example that in Georgia investigations into such cases were carried out without the President's involvement.
"And that's the right" approach, because it means that anyone might become subject to investigation, no matter whether it is President's personal photographer or President's relative, Saakashvili said.
He also said that there had been cases when his relatives were also investigated; he, however, did not elaborate further into details.
"There are no limitations in this regard... it's simply about rule of law," Saakashvili said.
"As far as my personal photographer is concerned, I was very upset and I am still very, very upset. But my personal feelings are secondary here; nothing personal, just business as usual," he added.
9 Jul. '11 Präsident Saakashvili äußert sich zu WTO-Gesprächen mit Russland
Die int. Überwachung des Handels über die strittigen Grenzen sei ein "minimaler Preis" für den WTO-Beitritt Russland. "Wir wollen nicht alle unsere Probleme auf Kosten des russ. WTO-Beitritts lösen. ..."
Accepting Tbilisi's demand for international monitoring of trade across disputed border will be "minimal price" for Russia to pay for joining the World Trade Organization, President Saakashvili said in an interview with the Ekho Moskvy radio station on July 8.
"We do not want to resolve all of our problems at the expense of [Russia's] WTO [accession]," Saakashvili said. "We understand it very well that we should not expect any serious changes for better under the present leadership in Russia and we should not expect de-occupation of our territories unless present stance is maintained in the Kremlin."
"But we would like that any of the international organization... to control movement of good across the Georgian borders [in breakaway Abkhazia and South Ossetia], which are recognized by the entire responsible international community," he said.
"I think this is a minimal price for Russia to pay" for joining WTO, Saakashvili added.
He said that the World Customs Organization (WCO), EU or any regional organization, "where there are at least several serious countries", could be chosen for carrying out monitoring on border crossing points at Psou and Roki Tunnel in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, respectively.
Russia, however, "refuses to carry out serious negotiate with us," Saakashvili added.
He also said that initially Russia was hoping that Tbilisi would have been pushed by its western allies to agree on Moscow's WTO entry, but "it has been explained to the Russia authorities very well by other countries, that it is up to them to settle this issue."
"In this regard I hope that at least to some extent, because of pragmatic reasons, the Russian [authorities] will come to that [position]," Saakashvili said.
Georgia and Russia held two rounds of Swiss-mediated talks over Russia's WTO entry terms since March, 2011.
8 Jul. '11 "Reporter ohne Grenzen" rufen Tbilisi zur Transparennz auf im Fall der verhafteten Fotographen
8 Jul. '11 Sechs Oppositionsparteieen schließen sich in einer neuen Koalition zusammen
Es sind die Parteien, die sich geweigert hatten, sich einem Abkommen zur Reform des Wahlsystems anzuschließen – National Forum; Our Georgia-Free Democrats (OGFD); Conservative Party; Republican Party; Georgia’s Way and Party of People
8 Jul. '11 Shamba tritt in abchasischer Präsidentwahl an
8 Jul. '11 Präsidentensprecherin Manan Manjgaladze: Fotographen verhaftet wegen Weiterrgabe von Information zu vertraulichen Vorgängen an Spionagenetzwerk
8 Jul. '11 Russ. Außenministerium äußert sich zu den verhafteten Fotojournalisten in Georgien
7 Jul. '11 Fall der verhafteten Fotografen als geheim eingestuft
7 Jul. '11 Patriarch Ilia II.: Gesetz zum Status religiöser Gruppen 'gefährlich'
7 Jul. '11 USA begrüßen Gesetz zum Status religiöser Minderheiten
7 Jul. '11 Innenminister Merabishvili: Effektivität der russ. Agenten in Georgien minimal
7 Jul. '11 Vier Fotojournalisten verhaftet wegen Anklagen wegen Spionage
7 Jul. '11 Berichte: Polizei verhaftet mehrere Fotojournalisten, vermutlich wegen Spionage
7 Jul. '11 Bill on Religious Minorities Legal Status Becomes Law
6 Jul. '11 67.7 Mio. USD nahm Justiz ein aus Strafen und Prozessvereinbarungen
6 Jul. '11 Disput zwischen Patarkatsishvili-Familie und Regierung beigelegt um Imedi TV und Mtatsminda Park
6 Jul. '11 Oppositionsparteien verurteilen Gesetz zum legalen Status religiöser Gruppen
6 Jul. '11 Georgische Kirche verurteilt Gesetz zum legalen Status religiöser Gruppen
5 Jul. '11 Gesetz zum legalen Status religiöser Gruppen verabschiedet in letzter Lesung
5 Jul. '11 Opposition Leaders Meet Estonian President
5 Jul. '11 Georgien bedauert Armenien's Nein zur UN-Resolution zu intern Vertriebenen in Georgien
5 Jul. '11 Estonian President Calls on Georgia to Continue Reforms
5 Jul. '11 Polish Gen. to Lead EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia
4 Jul. '11 Georgien bietet wieder Visa für russ. Bürger am Grenzübergang Zemo Larsi-Kazbegi an
Georgia has removed a restriction it imposed sixteen months ago and starting from July 2 Russian citizens are able to obtain Georgian entry visa at Zemo Larsi-Kazbegi border crossing point.
In late February, 2010, just few days before reopening of Zemo Larsi-Kazbegi border crossing point with Russia, Georgia banned issuance of visa at the checkpoint.
In October, 2010 Georgia allowed 90-day visa-free travel for Russian citizens registered as residents of Russia’s republics in the North Caucasus, while other Russian citizens were still able to obtain the visa upon arrival in Georgian airports. Russia said at the time that such a selective approach by Tbilisi was “a provocation.”
With the recent decision of Georgia, residents of the North Caucasus will still be able to enter and stay in Georgia for 90 days without visa; in addition, other citizens of Russia, not residing in the North Caucasus, will be able to obtain visa at the Zemo Larsi-Kazbegi border crossing point, which was not possible for them earlier.
“This decision is an additional measure of Georgia's visa policy, whose main aim is to facilitate the movement of people for tourism, business, medical or other humanitarian purposes, and to help every citizen save money and time when travelling,” the Georgian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on July 4.
4 Jul. '11 Annual Inflation Down to 10% in June - Geostat
4 Jul. '11 Estonian President to Visit Georgia
3 Jul. '11 New Rights Leader Says Referendum on Number of MPs Populism
2 Jul. '11 Überparteiliche Gruppe zu Gesetzesänderungen des Wahlssystems soll gemäß Abkommen gebildet werden
Sechs Oppositionsparteien hatten zuvor die Teilnahme abgelehnt.
2 Jul. '11 GYLA: Increase of Number of MPs Requires Referendum
1 Jul. '11 Amendments to Law on Rallies Approved
1 Jul. '11 Bill on Neutral Travel Documents Passed with Final Reading
1 Jul. '11 Relocation of Parliament to Kutaisi Passed with Final Reading
1 Jul. '11 Korrigierte 'Economic Liberty Act' in letzter Lesung verabschiedet
1 Jul. '11 Abkhaz Journalists Call for Live TV Debates of Presidential Candidates
1 Jul. '11 Watchdog Groups Criticize Electoral System Deal