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So far DFW-admin has created 62 blog entries.

Links between conflict in Ukraine and Georgia

By | May 2nd, 2022|Categories: Opinion|

David L. Phillips We were seated at the conference table in the office of Mikhail Saakashvili (aka “Misha”), the former President of Georgia, to discuss tensions with Russia. It was June 2008, just prior to the outbreak of war with separatist forces in South Ossetia and Abkhazia. I noticed photos with Senator John McCain, stacked on [...]

Breakaway Abkhazia sets fixed price for residence permit

By | March 23rd, 2019|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(DFWatch.) GALI, DFWatch--Sokhumi has set a fixed price for obtaining a residene permit, a document that is required, but hard for many here to obtain. The price will now be set to 600 Russian rubles, or USD 25, which is a relatively decent amount even for impoverished Gali residents. However, local ethnic Georgians who [...]

My time in the official service is over

By | September 14th, 2018|Categories: Opinion|

Dear friends and colleagues, as of today, September 13, my time in the official service of the Georgian government will be over. I wish to thank the people of Georgia, whose support and advice has empowered me to work for every Georgian administration since 1989. […]

Margvelashvili won’t run for president again, slams GD for animosity

By | August 31st, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Facebook.) President Giorgi Margvelashvili has announced his decision not to run for the presidential seat in the fall and slammed Georgia’s ruling party for attempts to ‘discredit’ him. […]

In Memoriam of Sen. John McCain

By | August 29th, 2018|Categories: Opinion|Tags: |

Tedo Japaridze and Sen. John McCain in helicopter en route to Pankisi in 2002. I had the great honor of meeting Senator McCain in early November of 1994 when I was Ambassador to the United States from Georgia.  He quickly and organically understood the challenges of a young democracy like ours trying to overcome [...]

Prosecutor suspended after alleged armed assault

By | August 28th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–A prosecutor at the west Georgia branch of the Prosecutor’s Office has been suspended and is being evaluated following an alleged armed assault, the POG said in a statement released Monday evening. […]

Sokhumi regime vice president resigns, declares vendetta to punish offender

By | August 22nd, 2018|Categories: Conflict news|Tags: |

Vitali Gabnia. Vice president of breakaway Abkhazia has stepped down after an incident when he was hit by a glass to his head, saying that plans to retaliate in “Abkhazian spirit”. […]

Georgia bows to Turkey’s Erdogan again, cracks down on Gulen-linked university in Tbilisi

By | August 21st, 2018|Categories: Education, News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia keeps on cracking down on educational institutions linked to the Turkish Islamic cleric Fethullah Gülen, whom Ankara has accused of masterminding the failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016. […]

Abkhazia declares Soviet passports invalid

By | August 18th, 2018|Categories: Conflict news|Tags: , |

GALI, DFWatch–Sokhumi has declared as invalid passports issued during the Soviet Union, which will cause problems for Georgians living in Abkhazia, many of whom rely on the documents for traveling in and out of the breakaway republic, locals told DFWatch. […]

New Russian surveillance position spotted at Koda as South Ossetia prepares to redraw de facto border

By | August 13th, 2018|Categories: News|

TBILISI, DFWatch–Locals have discovered a new surveillance post near Koda, a village along the perimeter of South Ossetia, where Georgia and Russia fought a brief war ten years ago. The observation post near the village of Koda, which likely includes […]

Russian bases in Abkhazia have mushroomed since 2008 war

By | August 12th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

The Russian military base in Tagolon, a village in the ethnic Georgian Gali region of Abkhazia. (DFWatch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Since the 2008 war, Russia has expanded its military infrastructure in the breakaway republic Abkhazia dramatically. There are currently Russian military facilities in Sokhumi, Ochamchire, Gudauta and Gali, as well as the villages Tagiloni, Nabakevi, Pichori, Otobaia, […]

It was inevitable, if not in 2008 it would erupt later: Hamilton on August War

By | August 11th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Robert Hamilton. Anna Kalandadze of Voice of America/Georgia spoke to Robert Hamilton, Professor of Eurasian Studies at US Army War College on his recollections of Russo-Georgian war of 2008 and where the country is going ten years after.  […]

Strong rain and flooding of houses and streets in Gali, Abkhazia

By | August 10th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Strong rain caused flooding of streets and houses in the southern Gali district of Abkhazia on Friday. The exact scale of the damage is not yet known, but the head of the local de facto administration claims the consequences would have been worse […]

Fire breaks out in South Ossetian de facto president’s building

By | August 8th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The building of de facto president’s administration in South Ossetia caught fire on Wednesday, destroying about 140 square meters. The fire took place on August 8, on the 10th anniversary of the five day Russo-Georgian war, which claimed hundreds of lives from both sides. […]

Separatist politician claims US strong-armed Latin American countries to not recognize Abkhazia

By | August 7th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: |

Maxim Gvinjia. (Sputnik.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Several Latin American countries that considered recognizing Abkhazia as an independent country refrained from doing so after the personal intervention by US and UK leaders, a former Sokhumi politician has claimed in an interview with Russian news agency RIA Novosti. […]

Former Georgian foreign minister Zourabichvili declares presidential run

By | August 7th, 2018|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian Foreign Minister Salome Zourabichvili has declared her intention to run for president of Georgia, and the ruling GD party appears to be ready to back her candidacy. Zourabichvili, who is of of Georgian origin but was born in France, served as French ambassador […]

Georgia triple murder suspect placed under psychiatric evaluation

By | August 4th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–A 19 year old shepherd charged with murdering an American family of three is undergoing psychiatric evaluation, his lawyer said on Monday. Malkhaz Kobauri, who faces life sentence for the savage killing of Ryan and Lora Smith and their 4 year old son Caleb, is being examined […]

Abkhazia steps up fight against drug crimes with draconian measures

By | July 28th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Sokhumi responds to the mass outcry over the growing problem of drug addiction by introducing draconian new measures, including capital punishment. Abkhazia’s de facto parliament has adopted […]

Villagers clash with riot police over illegal logging in Svaneti, Georgia

By | July 27th, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Riot police in Svaneti (1tv.ge) TBILISI, DFWatch–Villagers clashed with police in the highland Svaneti region of Georgia on Thursday. The unrest was triggered by the arrival of the finance police. The confrontation lasted throughout the day during which locals blocked the only road connecting […]

Georgia absent during UN vote to annul US recognition of Jerusalem

By | December 22nd, 2017|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia was among 21 countries that were absent during a vote in the UN General Assembly on Thursday to annul the US’s unilateral recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. “We […] have had consultations with our partners and our delegation […]

Trump picks new Afghanistan ambassador who served in Georgia

By | July 21st, 2017|Categories: News|Tags: , |

John Bass at the opening of the Batumi Center for Civic Engagement April 5, 2012. He was – U.S. Ambassador to Georgia at the time. (Archil Talakvadze/Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–US President Donald Trump has nominated former Ambassador to Georgia John Bass as new ambassador to Afghanistan. Bass currently serves as the US ambassador to Turkey. From 2009 to 2012, he served as ambassador to Georgia. He was nominated […]

Theories swirl about what started Tbilisi shopping centre fire

By | January 31st, 2017|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

(Radio Tavisupleba.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Several theories were circulating about the cause of a massive fire Monday morning near Tbilisi’s central railway station, which is estimated to have done several million US dollars’ worth of damage, but there is still no firm information about why it started. […]

Constitutional Court lifts work ban for former Soviet officials

By | November 6th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

The Freedom Charter bans Soviet symbols, but also bars former Soviet and Communist Party officials from holding public office for the rest of their lives. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Constitutional Court in Georgia has decided that a controversial provision barring former senior Soviet officials and Communist Party members from holding post in state institutions is unconstitutional. The court on Tuesday announced the ruling, […]

Website selling UEFA Super Cup tickets goes down

By | June 22nd, 2015|Categories: News, Sport|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The website biletebi.ge, which is responsible for selling tickets for UEFA Super Cup 2015, went down Monday morning. Administrators claim they have been the target of a cyber attack and that enormous amounts of users have tried to enter the site at the same time. […]

Tbilisi’s escaped zoo animals: Bear and hyena still not accounted for

By | June 17th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(police.ge) TBILISI, DFWatch--As Tbilisi reels from the shock of a tiger attack which killed one man in a warehouse around noon today, a bear and a hyena may still be on loose in a city with a million inhabitants. The man who was killed by an escaped zoo tiger has been identified as a [...]

Court decides that RMG Gold must allow inspection of ancient mine

By | May 14th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A court in Georgia on Wednesday decided that a mining company must allow experts access to a site so they can inspect an ancient gold mine which was destroyed last December. Tbilisi City Court ruled that the parties in the conflict, experts and witnesses […]

Georgian parliament to discuss low lari rate again

By | April 27th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Zurab Tkemaladze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliament in Georgia is calling on the group of economy ministers to explain themselves again about the falling currency rate, but the finance minister claims the drop in the lari’s value is only temporary. The value of the Georgian lari started […]

Suspected police killer says he was pressured into confessing

By | April 15th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Shalva Abuladze in court on Saturday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian man suspected of killing two policemen denies guilt after first having pleaded guilty. Shalva Abuladze was booked for two encounters with police, one in January and the last one on April 4, which left two policemen dead and two wounded. […]

Dismissed defense minister ‘told not to sign air defense agreement’

By | March 26th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Irakli Alasania. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili, former Defense Minister Irakli Alasania and his successor Mindia Janelidze on Wednesday accused each other of lying about a treaty Alasania signed in France in 2014 shortly before his dismissal. The treaty […]

Saakashvili’s party again demands answers from government

By | March 9th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The National Movement party warns of an economic crisis in Georgia and demands measures from the government. The government claims the situation is under control and the ruling coalition sees no need for scheduling the special session. […]

Georgian kickboxer accused of robbery in Russia

By | February 16th, 2015|Categories: Sport|Tags: |

Irakli Gvinjilia. (timer.ge.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian athlete and four time world champion in kickboxing was detained in Moscow last month, accused of robbery. Russian media outlets report that Irakli Gvinjilia is accused of stealing 70,000 Russian rubles, or about USD 1,000, from someone […]

Update: Restrictions on several roads due to snow

By | February 12th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Traffic restrictions on the Akhaltsikhe-Ninotsminda road are now lifted. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Traffic is still blocked along the road between Gudauri and Kobi in the north of Georgia due to danger of avalanche. According to the Road Department, no vehicles are allowed through. There are also the following restrictions on the Tkibuli […]

President’s annual address will be on March 18

By | February 10th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

President Giorgi Margvelashivli. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president’s annual state of the nation address in parliament will be held on March 18. It is still an open question whether there will be a debate after President Giorgi Margvelashvili’s address. His parliamentary secretary Giorgi […]

Eleven police officers detained in Georgia

By | February 3rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Eleven current and former police officers were detained in Georgia on Tuesday in connection with bombing of a human rights activist nearly two weeks ago. Yuri Vazagashvili, a Tbilisi businessman, was killed January 20 as he stepped on a land mine […]