News

Former AC Milan player elected Tbilisi mayor

by | October 22, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--Former AC Milan football player and Georgia’s current vice Prime Minister Kakha Kaladze has won a decisive victory in the election for Tbilisi mayor with 54 percent of the votes, according to an exit poll at 6pm. The exit polls was carried out by Edison Media Research.

News

Abkhazia shuts down elementary school in Georgian populated region

by | October 21, 2017

GALI, DFWatch--Breakaway authorities in Abkhazia have closed a public school in the region’s southern district which has a predominantly ethnic Georgian population. De facto authorities told school principals in Gali on Wednesday that the school in Tagiloni, a the village near Gali,

Crime

Gunman wounds four ahead of Georgia’s local elections

by | October 20, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--A gunman opened fire at a local office of Georgia’s ruling party Thursday night, wounding four people, two days before nationwide local elections that will gage the government’s hold on power. The attack, which wounded a candidate for Georgian Dream,

News

Georgian schools in Akhalgori facing a language dilemma

by | October 20, 2017

AKHALGORI, DFWatch--As eight Georgian schools in Akhalgori, South Ossetia have fully switched to Russian as the language of instruction, teachers find it hard to teach and are afraid of losing their jobs. As most pupils don’t know Russian, this may make their families leave Akhalgori and settle

NGO news

CSOs Seek Involvement in Public Defender’s Selection Process

by | October 19, 2017

We would like to respond to the statements related to the selection of Georgian Public Defender and call on the Parliament of Georgia to ensure civil society participation in the process of selecting the main human rights defender of the country. It is well-known to everyone that according to legislation, a Public Defender may be nominated by a parliamentary faction or by a group of at least six lawmakers, who do not belong to any faction. Despite it, civil society organizations had always participated in the discussions related to the election of Georgian Public Defender. As far as we know, following the elections, the Parliament of Georgia will launch the process of selecting the Public Defender. We suppose that participation of all stakeholders in this process will be of paramount importance. A number of documents, including the Action Plan of the Open Parliament of Georgia, envisages active participation of civil society in decision making.  Such promises gain importance just during such processes, as Public Defender's elections. Thus, we call on the Parliament of Georgia and especially, on the parliamentary majority group to ensure ...

Minorities

Either school or hijab – “my daughters will not go to school without hijab!”

by | October 18, 2017

“I want to learn and become a teacher. If I do not study, I know in future I will have hard life. I was not allowed into the school because I am wearing a hijab. I do not know what will happen now.

News

Circassians prevented from attending jailed activist’s court hearing

by | October 16, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--The regional court in Russia’s Krasnodar region upheld the decision made by the lower court to imprison a popular 67-year-old Circassian civic activist, while his supporters were barred from attending the trial on Monday.

Minorities

South Ossetia declares Jehovah’s Witnesses ‘extremists’

by | October 16, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--The supreme court in the breakaway region South Ossetia has ruled that Jehovah’s Witnesses is an extremist organization and banned its activities. When the ruling comes into force in a few days, Jehovah's Witnesses members will face up to 10 years

News

UNM mobilizes thousands against ‘oligarch’ Ivanishvili’s property takeover

by | October 16, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--Several thousand supporters of Georgia’s opposition National Movement party demonstrated Sunday outside the home of a former prime minister whom they call an oligarch and accuse of taking over valuable properties.

Opinion

Leaving behind “post-Soviet” politics in Georgia

by | October 12, 2017

For years democratization is seen as a top down process of constitutional engineering, nation-building, and market reforms. Until the early 2000s, states in former Eastern Europe saw their membership of NATO and the European Union as the final stage of consolidating their democracy.

News

Opposition clash with police as Tbilisi assembly OKs Ivanishvili land deals

by | October 11, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--The city assembly in Tbilisi, the Sakrebulo, on Tuesday approved the handover of two land lots to former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili for the symbolic price of one Georgian lari. While the vote went ahead, a ruckus of shouting and pushing took place outside,

Opinion

Abduction of Mukhtarli Abated Trust of Ethnic Azerbaijani Population towards Georgian Authorities

by | October 11, 2017

Ethnic Azerbaijani people make up 6.3% of the Georgian population that is 233,000 persons. It is the biggest ethnic minority community in the country though their voice is least heard here.

News

Circassians protesting against jailing of remembrance day organizer

by | October 10, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--In southern Russia’s Krasnodar region, Circassians, Abkhaz, Adyghe, Kabardians and Shapsughs continue to protest against the persecution of a 67-year-old activist regarded as a national hero and the most prominent civil rights worker.

News

PACE president resigns amid controversy about Syria trip

by | October 10, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--A Council of Europe official resigned on Monday after a controversial visit to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad. Pedro Agramunt announced his resignation as president of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) in a letter on Monday.

News

Wizz Air launches flights from Kutaisi to Rome, Paris, Barcelona and Prague

by | October 6, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--The Hungarian low-cost airline which is already very popular in Georgia may see its popularity rise to new heights after it announced new routes to Paris, Barcelona, Rome and Prague. “We are truly delighted to announce that starting

News

Abkhazia appeals to UNESCO for help to save cultural monuments

by | October 5, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--The de facto authorities in Abkhazia have asked the United Nation’s agency for cultural heritage, UNESCO, help protect historic buildings within territory they control. In a video published a few days ago, Georgia is accused of having a "destructive" policy

News

Six opposition activists detained outside Tbilisi City Hall

by | October 3, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--Police in Georgia detained six opposition activists on Monday, as supporters of the National Movement rallied outside Tbilisi City Hall to demand an immediate halt in the handover of two prime land plots to a company owned

Minorities

Ethnic Armenians clash with police in south of Georgia

by | October 2, 2017

TBILISI, DFWatch--Ethnic Armenians clashed with police in a village in the south of Georgia on Saturday after locals attempted to place a religious stone in the yard of Kumurdo temple. The tense situation in the village Kumurdo calmed down on Sunday but the brief street

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