TBILISI, DFWatch--There is a need for new people in the Georgian Dream government, businessman Bidzina Ivanishvili said Wednesday evening, in his first public comments on the change of prime minister and other recent developments in the coalition
TBILISI, DFWatch--A female police officer who was injured in a shooting on Wednesday in Telavi died later the same day. Maia Javakhishvili was injured during a shooting in front of a police station, while her partner, Captain Gela Lamazoshvili, died on the spot.
TBILISI, DFWatch--A policeman was shot and killed on Wednesday outside the police station in Telavi, a town in Georgia’s eastern Kakheti region. The officer, Gela Lamazoshvili, died on the spot. A female police officer was also injured in the shooting
TBILISI, DFWatch--Part of the capital’s waste collectors and street sweepers went on strike on Wednesday morning, demanding a 50 percent pay increase. Employees showed up today at the office of Tbilservice, the company responsible for keep Tbilisi clean.
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian parliament approved the new government on Tuesday by 86 votes against 28. Lawmakers debated the government program all day, sparring with new Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili into late night hours. Both the two
TBILISI, DFWatch--The leader of the breakaway region South Ossetia has ordered a proposal to be put before the elected assembly about changing the entity’s name to South Ossetia - Alania. Along with the proposed name change, a referendum
TBILISI, DFWatch--A citizens’ appeal to pardon former Tbilisi mayor Gigi Ugulava has been rejected by President Giorgi Margvelashvili. Ugulava has been in detention since July 2014. His supporters argue that there have been committed several violations
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia's prime minister in waiting defended his handling of the economic crisis as he answered questions from parliamentarians on Monday ahead of a confirmation vote today, Tuesday. As expected, Giorgi Kvirikashvili's tenure as economy minister
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Pentagon has denied the capture of Islamic State commander Omar Al-Shishani, a citizen of Georgia whose birth name is Tarkhan Batirashvili. A spokesperson for the U.S. Defense Department told Ria Novosti that the information
TBILISI, DFWatch--Tarkhan Batirashvili, a.k.a. Abu Omar al-Shishani, a notorious IS field commander from Georgia’s Pankisi Gorge, was reportedly seized by Kurdish and American commandos in Northern Iraq on Friday. Abu Omar’s arrest was reported by the Russian
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s High Council of Justice on Friday appointed a new judge to the Appeals Court who was criticized as one of the court officials who decided to go easy on of those involved in the murder of a bank employee in 2006. The murder of Sandro Girgvliani
TBILISI, DFWatch--Giorgi Kvirikashvili, the designated new prime minister of Georgia, plans to present his cabinet tomorrow. The list is expected to be almost identical to the current government, but he does not rule out changes in the future. The former vice prime minister
TBILISI, DFWatch--Supporters of a second mosque in Batumi began collecting signatures Friday. The city on Georgia’s Black Sea coast is largely Muslim but the only mosque has been overcrowded for decades. Signatures were collected at a corner of the Orta Jame
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Finance Ministry’s investigation service have detained a group of ten people for manufacturing fake credit cards and stealing more than 1.5 million laris. Investigators describe the case as ‘a large-scale international crime.’ The ten are suspected of illegally
TBILISI, DFWatch--President Giorgi Margvelashvili Friday supported the ruling coalition’s nominee, Giorgi Kvirikashvili, as candidate for new prime minister and asked parliament to approve him. The president’s administration supported Kvirikashvili’s candidacy
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian president pardoned 238 prisoners on Friday, 18 of whom were women and three minors. According to Zviad Koridze, head of the president’s pardon commission, 172 prisoners will leave jail today. 11 of them are women and two are minors.
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Prosecutor General’s Office has launched an investigation into an incident where a man was allegedly beaten by police officers. The Public Defender wrote on Thursday that a person had surgery at the central hospital in Tbilisi on November 10,
TBILISI, DFWatch--Belgium became the last member country to add its consent to Georgia’s association agreement with the European Union on Thursday. The agreement has now been ratified by all 28 member states as well as EU's own institutions
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian Dream coalition has agreed on Giorgi Kvirikashvili as their candidate for new prime minister, as replacement for Irakli Garibashvili, who resigned Wednesday evening. Kvirikashvili is former vice prime minister and minister of foreign affairs.
TBILISI, DFWatch--The deadline for parliament to approve a new government is 14 or 15 January, 2016, but the procedure may finish before New Year, Georgia’s speaker of parliament said Thursday. Irakli Garibashvili announced his resignation last night
TBILISI, DFWatch--The candidate for new prime minister will be discussed at a session of the Georgian Dream coalition on Friday, the speaker of parliament said Wednesday evening after the PM announced his resignation. Speaker Davit Usupashvili
TBILISI, DFWatch--Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili announced his resignation in a brief TV address on Wednesday, after more than two years in the post. He did not state any specific reasons for leaving, nor offer advice on who his successor should be, which ultimately
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia's Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili may announce his resignation at a special briefing planned at his office on Wednesday, at 8pm Tbilisi time. The PM's resignation was reported earlier by Georgian news agencies, and although
TBILISI, DFWatch--A woman who has twice been convicted of robbery is a participant in the talent show Voice of Georgia. Tuesday, she was told live during the show that she has been pardoned and given a car. The Voice accepted Teona Kolbaia during casting
TBILISI, DFWatch--Police in Georgia have identified a taxi driver in Tbilisi who allegedly beat a woman who rejected his attempts at physical contact. The suspect has not yet been apprehended, but an investigation has been launched based on article 125
TBILISI, DFWatch--President Giorgi Margvelashvili on Monday declared 2016 as the Year of the European State. He made the announcement at a ceremony to celebrate the 25 year anniversary of founding of the National Guard. The president said
TBILISI, DFWatch--Russia is beginning a process of simplifying visa rules for Georgian citizens, a few days after the EU published a positive final report about fulfillment of a visa liberalization action plan. The Russian Foreign Ministry announced on Tuesday that
TBILISI, DFWatch--A local politician in Georgia bit off part of the ear of a colleague during a fight on Monday. Emiko Peikrishvili, the former head of Kareli municipality in the Shida Kartli region, bit off a small part of the ear of Ilia Kelekhsashvili, assistant to the current municipal
TBILISI, DFWatch--A Georgian football official died in a car accident Tuesday morning. Davit Petriashvili (46) was hit by a police car in the center of Tbilisi and died on the spot. Petriashvili who used to manage relations between the Georgian Football Federation
TBILISI, DFWatch--A man in Georgia was Monday sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering a policeman and trying to murder four other police officers. According to Shalva Khachapuridze, a lawyer representing the murder convict Shalva Abuladze,
TBILISI, DFWatch--A woman suspected of murdering her husband and son denies committing the crime, claiming that she doesn’t know what happened but was trying to save her husband when she found him. The woman was questioned about the case and the court
TBILISI, DFWatch--A section of the E60, the main highway east-west through Georgia, has once more been cut off because a river spilled over its banks near Kutaisi. The damaged section is the 206th km of the Tbilisi-Senaki-Leselidze road, the same section which
TBILISI, DFWatch--A poll published on Monday shows the ruling Georgian Dream coalition back in the lead, and a surge in voters' apathy slightly abating. The latest National Democratic Institute (NDI) poll, carried out in late November, early December, shows that if there
TBILISI, DFWatch--A Georgian businessman has proposed to create a commission to prevent media and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from insulting the country’s traditional values. Levan Vasadze, who formally has status as ‘knight’
TBILISI, DFWatch--A woman was arrested in Tbilisi on Sunday suspected of murdering her husband and five-year-old son. According to investigators, the woman, who is about 26 years old, injured her two year older husband by hitting him in the head with
TBILISI, DFWatch--Police in Georgia have arrested a man accused of robbing four churches in Kakheti, a province in the eastern part of Georgia, a few days ago. Investigators say the man, who is about 21 years old, was arrested at night while attempting to rob
TBILISI, DFWatch--Non-governmental organizations on Friday presented a report about how Georgia is doing in fulfilling its requirements under an association agreement signed with EU in 2014. The report outlines progress in some fields, but also problems
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian Defense Ministry this week announced vacancies for joining the military on a contractual basis. The contracts offered have a four year term and are available for persons between 18 and 35 year, and youth who have served compulsory military
TBILISI, DFWatch--The EU Commission announced Friday that Georgia has fulfilled a stepwise plan toward visa liberalization. This could mean that as early as in mid 2016, Georgian citizens will be able to travel without a visa to countries in the Schengen area, which apart
TBILISI, DFWatch--Ukraine’s Interior Minister Arsen Avakov Wednesday published a video showing a quarrel between him and Mikheil Saakashvili, Governor of Odessa, and former President of Georgia. The video shows them bickering and Avakov
TBILISI, DFWatch--An alleged New Year’s terror plot by Islamic State and an airspace violation by a Russian helicopter were some one of the topics at a regular field meeting about the conflict over the breakaway territory South Ossetia on Wednesday. The meeting
TBILISI, DFWatch--The question of whether politicians tried to use their influence to fast-track the pardoning of certain prisoners was no closer to being settled Wednesday, after prosecutors had questioned at least 30 people. Prosecutor Koka Katsitadze said he doesn’t
TBILISI, DFWatch--High winds destroyed the roof of a house in Tbilisi on Wednesday, leaving three families homeless. The wind also tore down a tree on Dadiani Street, which damaged electricity transmission lines, as a result of which households living on the street were left
TBILISI, DFWatch--The National Food Agency calls on parents to be careful during the Christmas period after a two-year old accidentally swallowed a firecracker hidden inside a package of sweet corn chips. The boy didn’t notice the firecracker among the chips and swallowed it.
TBILISI, DFWatch--The the former head of the president’s pardon commission was questioned at the Prosecutor General’s Office on Monday. Aleko Elisashvili claims he was pressured by authorities to give a favorable decision in the cases of specific prisoners,
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in the first eleven months of 2015 was 14 percent less than in the same period last year, according to preliminary figures published by the National Statistics Department. The total turnover amounted to USD 8,892 million,
TBILISI, DFWatch--The vice speaker of the Georgian parliament confirms that she approached the president’s pardon commission and requested to have certain prisoners pardoned. The admission came after a newspaper published information based on
TBILISI, DFWatch--The first train along a new route from China to Turkey, bypassing Russia, arrived in Tbilisi Sunday morning. The arrival of the 21 wagon train, whose final destination is Istanbul, marks the official opening of the Silk Road, the Georgian
TBILISI, DFWatch--Four dead bodies were discovered in Khelvachauri in southwestern Georgia on Saturday, four kilometers from the border with Turkey. The four bodies were frozen and almost covered in snow, and allegedly belong to citizens of Bangladesh.
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Ministry of Economic Development is the most closed public institution in Georgia, in terms of providing public information. This is one of the findings in a new report published Friday by the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI).
TBILISI, DFWatch--Government officials tried to pressure the president’s pardon commission into releasing certain prisoners, former commission head Aleko Elisashvili claims. The current head of the pardon commission, Zviad Koridze, says he can confirm Elisashvili’s
TBILISI, DFWatch--On December 10, the International Human Rights Day, the Public Defender as usual published a brief report about the situation in Georgia in terms of human rights. DF Watch compiled an overview of the most important issues discussed in the report.
Two Ukrainian militiamen, including Irakli Kutelia, an ethnic Georgian volunteer, were killed on Wednesday afternoon and seven others were injured as their infantry fighting vehicle ran over a mine near Donetsk, Ukrainian and Georgian media report.
TBILISI, DFWatch--Direct foreign investments in Georgia was 33 percent lower in the third quarter of 2015 than in the same period last year, according to preliminary data from the National Statistics Department. Direct foreign investments amounted to USD 489 million
Widespread electoral fraud allegations and the growing gap between the political élites and the society confirm worrying trends in Armenia’s democratic development. On Sunday, 6 December a nationwide constitutional referendum was held in Armenia.
TBILISI, DFWatch--A man who married a 13 year old girl and now has two children by her will not face trial for sexual relations with a minor, prosecutors have decided. Nadim Paksadze, who is now 21, was under investigation for marrying a minor, which has become
TBILISI, DFWatch--A construction worker died on Tuesday during work on a bypass road near Kobuleti in western Georgia. The 40-year-old man is said to have fallen from a 20-meter tall bridge and died from multiple injuries. An investigation has been launched
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia is in negotiations with Turkey about locating all 274 Georgian prisoners in that country in the same jail. The Georgian prison minister visited Turkey’s justice minister Tuesday and discussed conditions of Georgian prisoners,
TBILISI, DFWatch--By October, 995 persons had applied for asylum in Georgia, while 1,192 people were living here under protection of international law, according to a new report by the Public Defender. The report, which was published on Monday, shows that
TBILISI, DFWatch--The Georgian Orthodox Church issued a short statement Sunday evening explaining that Patiarch Ilia II never meant to ask for legislative amendments to grant him the right to pardon prisoners. December 5, the patriarch attended a performance by women prisoners at Rustaveli Theatre,
TBILISI, DFWatch--A strike among workers on the BP South Caucasus pipeline expansion has ended without drama as management fulfilled the main demand, but workers who were fired have not been given their jobs back. Three days ago, nearly 200 workers
TBILISI, DFWatch--The head of the Georgian Orthodox Church has asked for the power to pardon prisoners. Catholicos Patriarch Ilia II said Saturday that he thinks a patriarch should be able to pardon prisoners and added that he has spoken with the prime minister
TBILISI, DFWatch--The current president of Georgia on Friday revoked the citizenship of his predecessor, Mikheil Saakashvili, who is now governor of Odessa in Ukraine. Georgian legislation doesn’t allow dual citizenship. Since Saakashvili became a citizen of Ukraine
TBILISI, DFWatch--Police Friday detained a suspect who allegedly robbed a mosque in Tbilisi. The suspect, a 22 year old man, secretly snuck into a mosque in the old part of Tbilisi and stole a computer from a room used by Mullahs, and then went into hiding, according to the Interior Ministry.
TBILISI, DFWatch--For a second time in one week, gunshots have been fired at a congregation hall used by Jehovah’s Witnesses in Tbilisi. Monday morning, someone fired shots at the Kingdom Hall building in Vazisubani, a suburb in the Georgian capital.
TBILISI, DFWatch--About 200 workers went on strike Wednesday morning at BP’s South Caucasus gas pipeline expansion project in southern Georgia. Their demands are to increase their reduced working hours and reduced salaries, and to get paid for working on weekends
TBILISI, DFWatch--There were 6.9 percent more visitors to Georgia during the last eleven months, compared to the same period last year, according to the Interior Ministry. There is no official data about how many of visitors are tourists, but the MIA counts the number
TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgian intelligence service Tuesday confirmed the arrest of four persons for links to Islamic State. Levan Izoria, Deputy Head of the State Security Service, said at a briefing that the four openly support the ideology of the terrorist organization known as ISIS.