TBILISI, DFWatch--A TV channel in Georgia has published footage apparently proving that the Georgian police allows friends of government officials to violate traffic rules if they can show a special permit. The licences to drive dangerously were introduced
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili has rejected a call by his predecessor Mikheil Saakashvili that it is a test of ‘decency’ to pardon three former top government officials who are convicted of crimes committed while in office. Saakashvili, who is now
TBILISI, DFWatch--A dead body has been found in the river Mtkvari, increasing the number of confirmed deaths after the June flood to 20. Two people are still missing. Moambe, the news program on Channel 1, reported that Elizbar Baghashvili, 56, has been found.
TBILISI, DFWatch--A European human rights observer claims Georgia is using excessive pre-trial detention for political reasons against former government officials. The new report is written by Pedro Agramunt from the Spanish People's Party, and published by
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian parliament on Tuesday started reviewing a proposal to abolish compulsory military service and move to a professional military based on contracts. The goal of the bill is to redirect finances spent for compulsory military service
TBILISI, DFWatch--A small, male-dominated village in the northeast of Georgia has for the first time appointed a woman as a head of municipality. Monday, Tamar Margoshvili, 55, took the post as gamgebeli in Duisi, a village in Pankisi Gorge, Georgia,
TBILISI, DFWatch--Police in Georgia Sunday detained two Georgian for beating two Nigerians in Tbilisi. The attacked happened on September 19 when one Georgian citizen and his two Nigerian friends were walking on Rustaveli Avenue in the capital.
TBILISI, DFWatch--A statue of Joseph Stalin may be put back up in his hometown Gori, where positive sentiments towards the late Soviet ruler are still high. The city council is to discuss the issue on Friday, October 2. If the council approves the decision, the statue will be erected in the small park in central Gori, near the Stalin museum. The overall cost of the project is up to 2 million laris, or about USD 840,000.
TBILISI, DFWatch--The National Bank of Georgia has issued a new anniversary coin in connection with the national currency's 20 years of existence. The nominal value of the new collector's item is 20 laris, and it was manufactured by Mennica Polska in Poland.
Tbilisi, DFWatch - “After all contacts were broken, nothing is being built in Abkhazia,” Paata Zakareishvili, State Minister for Reconciliation and Civic Equality, stated at the parliament library on Sunday.
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s ombudsman has called attention to discrimination against fathers at the Children's Infectious Diseases Clinical Hospital. Fathers are not allowed to stay at the clinic at night to supervise their kids. The ombudsman Wednesday described
TBILISI, DFWatch--The human rights committee in Georgia’s parliament Thursday favored a law that would guarantee that at least 25% of representatives are women. The law concerns those representatives who are elected
TBILISI, DFWatch--A leading member of parliament from the ruling Georgian Dream coalition is leaving in order to take the helm of the government's Partnership Fund. It is not yet known who will replace Davit Saganelidze as member of parliament. According
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s National Bank intervened to bolster the flagging currency lari on Tuesday, causing its value to rise four tetris against the US dollar. The Bank put USD 40 million up for auction, out of which USD 27 million has been sold so far. The lari currently
TBILISI, DFWatch--A Georgian soldier has died in Afghanistan while taking part in the NATO-led Resolute Support mission. Private Vasil Kuljanishvili was from the 43rd battalion of the IV Mechanized Brigade. Sergeant Paata Rostobaia from the same
Campaign of the Russian authorities to ‘reveal’ and include in the special ‘foreign agents’ registry of non-governmental (NGOs) organizations, has been accelerating exponentially. After two and a half years of introducing the law, there are
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia's national currency is four cents away from reaching its lowest point ever against the US dollar. When the lari began to drop rapidly in November, 2014, one USD was about 1.75 laris. Today, the Georgian National Bank’s official exchange
TBILISI, DFWatch--A conservative MP from the ruling Georgian Dream coalition wants to make changes to the anti-discrimination law passed by parliament last year which he himself voted for at every hearing. Soso Jachvliani, an armwrestler, actor and film director,
DFWatch (5–18 September 2015) Daghestan On September 13 local elections took place in the republic. The Party of Russia’s Veterans earned 69% of votes in the city of Buynaksk, while United Russia earned 66%
TBILISI, DFWatch--A police officer is in hospital in a serious condition after being stabbed Sunday night in a Tbilisi suburb. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the policeman was stabbed with a knife. An investigation has been launched for attacking a policeman.
TBILISI, DFWatch--Border police in Georgia Sunday detained four people for illegally trying to cross the border with a infant in the trunk of their car. According to the Interior Ministry, the four were trying to go to Turkey, avoiding the official border crossing. One of the grownups
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia will send two separate delegations to the upcoming UN general assembly in New York, one headed by the prime minister and the other by the president. Similar to what happened last year, there was a debate that lasted for several months
TBILISI, DFWatch--Demonstrators Friday called for a proper investigation into an Azerbaijani woman’s suicide last year. The demonstrators outside the Prosecutor's Office were raising awareness about the case of Khanum Jeiranova (30), an ethnic Azeri
TBILISI, DFWatch--Groups rallied outside the office of Radio Liberty in Tbilisi Friday evening against a homophobic and xenophobic letter written by a sexologist and published on the radio station’s website. The controversial letter was written by Archil Bakradze,
TBILISI, DFWatch--After one day in freedom, Tbilisi’s former mayor was Friday sentenced to four and a half years in jail. Although the city court in Tbilisi sentenced Gigi Ugulava to nine years, the sentence was reduced to four years and six months in compliance
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Swedish telecommunications giant TeliaSonera is pulling out of several countries, including Georgia. All subsidiaries will be put up for sale in Georgia, Uzbekistan, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Tajikistan it was announced Thursday.
TBILISI, DFWatch--An anti-hail shell fell on a house in Kakheti Wednesday night, damaging the roof and wall. Delta, a defense company run by the government, installed the anti-hail system in Kakheti earlier this year to protect the harvest. Hail has long
TBILISI, DFWatch--Tbilisi City Court released former Mayor of Tbilisi Gigi Ugulava from detention Thursday night. Upon his release, the most prominent leader of the Georgian opposition vowed to challenge “Ivanishvili’s grip on power”. He said the National
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s Constitutional Court Wednesday evening announced a ruling that the detention of former Tbilisi mayor Gigi Ugulava is unconstitutional. He is awaiting trial for numerous charges including corruption. The ruling sets aside a provision in the
TBILISI, DFWatch--There are twice as many men as women running public bodies in Georgia, according to a new report. The report by Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI), published on Wednesday, indicates that among 773 employees in higher
TBILISI, DFWatch--The semifinal of Miss China will be held in Georgia. According to the National Tourism Administration, a team from Phoenix TV arrived in Tbilisi September 12 along with the girls from China and will be staying until September 22. There are 16 participants
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s Constitutional Court on Tuesday failed to announce a ruling concerning the pre-trial detention of the former Tbilisi mayor, claiming that the judge feels ill and he cannot be present to sign the ruling. Ex-Mayor Gigi Ugulava, an ally of former
TBILISI, DFWatch--Remittances to Georgia fell by 35.1 percent in August 2015, compared to the same period last year, according to new figures published Tuesday by Georgia’s National Bank. The new monthly report shows that the total amount of remittances
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s education ministry has postponed the start of a new school subject as conservatives criticize it for eroding traditional values. Some were expecting the subject called ‘society and me’ to be taught in schools from the beginning of the 2015 fall semester. ‘Society and me’ will
TBILISI, DFWatch--Farmers continued their protest in the Georgian wine region Kakheti on Monday and clashed with police as they blocked the main highway. Several people were detained by police as they cleared the road. One member of parliament was attacked.
TBILISI, DFWatch--Exactly three months after a devastating flood, Tbilisi Zoo reopened on Sunday with surviving animals on display. The zoo’s management held an opening exhibition with pictures of the animals that either drowned or were killed, and presented
Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in the first eight months of 2015 was 14 percent less than the year before, according to figures published Monday by the National Statistics Department, Geostat.
TBILISI, DFWatch--About 130 tourists from Georgia are still stuck in Antalya, Turkey, several days after a tour operator failed to pay the airline for their flights. Initially, about 400 passengers were stranded in Turkey. The Georgian airline Airzena
TBILISI, DFWatch--In the eastern Georgian region of Kakheti, farmers have been protesting for several days because of low price of grapes, which is their only source of income. Four people were detained during a protest Thursday in Gurjaani, as farmers blocked the
TBILISI, DFWatch--Around 400 Georgian passengers are currently stuck in Antalya, Turkey, as the airline Airzena refuses to carry out a flight because a tour company didn’t pay for the tickets. For more than a day, passengers have been waiting to return to Georgia. The
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Chinese company Dongfang Electric plans to construct a 150 MW thermal power station in Tkibuli, a mining town in western Georgia. The announcement came during a China visit by Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili and is further
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian president Thursday signed a bill into law that will take away responsibility for supervising private banks from the National Bank and hand it to a new agency controlled by the government. President Giorgi Margvelashvili, the
TBILISI, DFWatch--Direct foreign investments in Georgia went up 81 percent in the second quarter, compared to the same period in 2014. The jump in foreign investment became known Wednesday as Georgia’s National Statistics Department presented
The UK ambassador attributes the recent criticism over her speech at the international conference to the poor translation, stating that some parts of it were misrepresented. Salome Zourabishvili, a French-Georgian politician and former Minister
TBILISI, DFWatch--A Georgian politician lashed out at a British diplomat on Facebook Tuesday, accusing her of being ‘neocolonial’. UK Ambassador to Georgia Alexandra Hall Hall’s remarks at a conference in Tbilisi, organized by McCain Institute,
Local fraction of Georgian Dream alleges Mr Saakashvili’s “Armenian origin” in a fresh display of anti-Armenian sentiment. NGO platform No to Phobia issued a statement condemning the use of Armenophobic
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgian Trade Union has won a lawsuit against RMG Gold, the mining company which destroyed an ancient gold mine at Sakdrisi in December, 2014. Many locals have been employed in the company, and the jobs sustain families in surrounding villages.
TBILISI, DFWatch--Ukraine intends to sign a free trade pact with the EU without further postponement, despite warnings from Russia, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said in Brussels on Monday. Ukraine’s foreign minister met with the EU Commissioner
In December, 2014, an archaeological site in southern Georgia was destroyed by the Russian mining company RMG Gold. What was lost in the blasts at Sakdrisi? Professor Thomas Stöllner at the University of Bochum in Germany is one of the people
TBILISI, DFWatch--Two politicians from Abkhazia have been banned from entering Moldova for ten years after they celebrated the 25 year anniversary of the breakaway region Transnistria. On the way back from the celebration, Sukhumi's vice president Vitaly Gabniya
TBILISI, DFWatch--The National Movement, former ruling party, does not plan to put up candidates in the by-elections for two vacant seats in the Georgian parliament. Instead, the former ruling party plans to use its legally guaranteed free commercial time on TV. The governing
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s former president Mikheil Saakashvili, who now serves as a governor of the Odessa region, says oligarchs are the foremost obstacle for Ukraine’s nascent statehood. “Ukrainian oligarchs,
DFWatch (29 August–4 September 2015) Daghestan Two suspected militants were killed in Magaramkent district of Daghestan on August 29. According to the law enforcement officials,
TBILISI, DFWatch--A 38 year man was arrested on Saturday for growing marijuana in the northwest of Georgia. The man is charged with illegal purchase and possession of a large amount of drugs. Police searched the man’s house in the village
Tbilisi, DFWatch - The fourth weekly political TV programme may be cancelled on Georgia, as the Public Broadcaster (GPB) may suspend Pirveli Studia (“First Studio”), soon after announcement of marriage of its hostess with the Secretary General of opposition political party.
TBILISI, DFWatch--Electricity prices have gone up in the Georgian capital. Utility company Telasi explains the decision with a drop in the national currency lari, as well as increased prices for purchasing electricity and increased transmission taxes. There are three
TBILISI, DFWatch--A man killed a 39 year old woman working in a shop in western Georgia on Thursday for not letting him borrow a beer. The murder took place in Khelvachauri, in the Adjara region. The suspect has been detained, according to the Ministry
Georgian Prime Minister distances himself from the recent cancelation of two popular political talk-shows on Imedi TV, stating that it is a separate decision of the TV company's management. "If a TV company cancels a talk-show, this is a separate decision by its top management, which I'm not going to comment," - Irakli Garibashvili, PM, said to a dozen of journalists at the rugby training center inauguration in Didi Digomi, Tbilisi's western outskirt. "For the third year, the country and the government has proved that media freedom in the first place… The result is that media is free," Irakli Garibashvili said, adding that in the last three years there has not been any instance of pressure on the media from authorities, and this fact "needs recognition and appropriate appreciation." Imedi TV, a large national Georgian TV company owned by the family of late mogul, Badri Patarkatsishvili, last Sunday announced that it will suspend two popular political talk shows ‘temporarily’ until 2016, promising to change their format and offer viewers ‘a new product.’ Imedi’s decision was met with a negative response from viewers. Opponents of ...
TBILISI, DFWatch--A statement by a leading parliamentarian about the president and knitting pins has caused puzzlement in Georgia. A spokesman for the president’s administration called it insulting and unethical. "I blame Ivanishvili for taking the knitting pins out of the hands of the NGO and Soros guys ("ენჯეოელი სოროსელი")
TBILISI, DFWatch--One more talk show has been taken off air in Georgia. The Sunday evening program ‘Kviris 2030’, which has been a venue for views close to former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, will end in September, producer Vasil Maglapheridze said on Tuesday.
Tbilisi, DFWatch - Inga Grigolia, a popular TV host, wrote on her Facebook that politicians, presumably from the ruling Georgian Dream, didn't want her on air before the elections, referring to the parliamentary elections planned in 2016.
Tbilisi, DFWatch - Tamar Beruchashvili, Minister of Foreign Affairs, was replaced by Giorgi Kvirikashvili, who served as Minister of Economy. The government reshuffle was
Tserakvi, DFWatch - A pilot project on participatory budgeting brings the population of Marneuli district closer to the decision-making process and brings democratic participation to a new level. One Caucasus Festival ended on Saturday, but the organizers took steps to secure its pro-democratic overtone in the long run.