Monthly Archives: October 2013

//October

Saakashvili pardons former officials on eve of presidency

By | October 31st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

President Mikheil Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Mikheil Saakashvili has pardoned 248 prisoners, 170 of whom had their sentence stricken from their criminal record. 56 had their sentence reduced to half, while 5 received a lighter sentence. Among those pardoned are former government […]

Bacho Akhalaia acquitted in abuse case

By | October 31st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Bacho Akhalaia was acquitted along with seven others for abuse of special unit employees. The prosecutor will appeal the ruling. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi City Court found Bacho Akhalaia not guilty of abusing seven special unit employees, a case which has been under review for two months. The former defense minister was on trial for mistreatment and torture for political reasons of seven special […]

Father of dead prisoner doubts veracity of surveillance video

By | October 31st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Tengiz Dzvelaia. (Channel 1.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Father of Goga Dzvelaia, who allegedly committed suicide in Kutaisi’s prison no 2 a few weeks ago, claims that the prison ministry showed him footage of another person instead of his son. On Tuesday, the family watched 24 hours of a surveillance tape which […]

Interpol issues red alert for Georgia jihad video suspect

By | October 31st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Samar Chokutayev, the suspect in the jihad video case. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Interpol has issued a red alert in the search for Samar Chokutaev, the alleged perpetrator behind the so-called jihad videos against Georgian soldiers in Afghanistan. The Prosecutor’s Office in Georgia sent documents to Interpol asking to launch […]

Georgians detained in Italy for murder of Rus mafia boss

By | October 31st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Aslan Usoyan, also known as Ded Hassan, was murdered in Moscow in January, 2013. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Police in Rome have detained three Georgians who are suspected of murdering the Russian mafia boss Ded Hassan in January, 2013. 76 year-old Aslan Usoyan, also known as Ded Hassan, or Grandpa Hassan, was shot in the head by a sniper when he was […]

Report highlights some irregularities in Georgia’s election

By | October 30th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , |

Observers from six eastern European countries found minor irregularities in Georgia’s presidential election. (EILAT.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum Task Force (TF) gives Sunday’s election a positive evaluation, but also highlights several violations. The task force consisted of seven observers from Belarus, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Moldova, Ukraine and Poland, […]

Inauguration to be financed by gov’t reserve fund

By | October 30th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

The inauguration of newly elected president Giorgi Margvelashvili (right) will be financed by the government’s reserve fund. Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili left. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The inauguration of the new president will be financed from the government’s reserve fund, Georgia’s finance minister says. Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri said Wednesday that there is not enough money in the president’s reserve fund to finance […]

Davitashvili leaves politics, but remains MP

By | October 30th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Koba Davitashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Koba Davitashvili, a member of parliament from the Georgian Dream coalition and leader of the People’s Party, says he is leaving politics because of a lack of support. Davitashvili says he realized after the recent presidential election that he […]

Top Abkhazian security official dismissed

By | October 30th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Stanislav Lakoba. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Stanislav Lakoba, Secretary of the de facto Security Council of Abkhazia, who is in the de facto government for years and is known for having anti-Georgian views, has been fired. According to Russian and Abkhazian media, Alexander Ankvab, the de facto […]

Bacho Akhalaia sentenced to three years, nine months

By | October 30th, 2013|Categories: News, Prisoner abuse|Tags: |

Former Prison Minister Bacho Akhalaia on the day of his detention, November 7, 2012. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A court in Georgia has sentenced a former government minister to three years and nine months in jail for his role in a prison riot in 2006. Bacho Akhalaia, former Prison, Defense and Interior Minister, was charged together with Davit Chakua, Revaz […]

Georgia to sue Russian telecom company MTC

By | October 30th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Prime Minister of Georgia, Bidzina Ivanishvili, says mobile phones get connected to MTC when 200 meters from the de facto border. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia is preparing to sue the Russian communications network MTC. Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili said Monday at a press conference that he met with Polish journalists on Sunday and received information that the area near the […]

United States congratulates Georgia on election

By | October 29th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. (Official photo.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The United States has congratulated the Georgian people on holding a peaceful presidential election. A statement published on the State Department website says the presidential election on October 27 was an important step for Georgia’s democratic […]

Saakashvili sums up nearly ten years in power

By | October 29th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Mikheil Saakashvili bid farewell to the Georgian people in a last televised address. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s outgoing president Mikheil Saakashvili has left for Brussels to meet with Chairman of the EU Commission Jose Manuel Barroso. Before leaving, Saakashvili held a last televised address from his palace. He thanked people for giving […]

Parliament in Georgia resumes work Thursday

By | October 29th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The parliament in Georgia will continue working from Thursday. At noon, a plenary session will start, and before that a session of bureau will be held to agree on the timetable. The first issue for parliament will be to approve a new government, as […]

NATO, EU and OSCE praise Georgia’s election

By | October 29th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

EU’s foreign policy spokesperson Catherine Ashton said Georgia has shown strong democratic credentials. (EU.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In statements to the media, NATO, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) are celebrating Sunday’s election as a historic step forward for democracy in Georgia. The Organization for Security and Cooperation […]

Margvelashvili has decided on new Security Council secretary

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Giorgi Margvelashvili has picked the person who will be new secretary of Georgia’s National Security Council. At a joint press conference with Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, he avoided naming who the new secretary is, but said he has his own […]

Georgia’s new president rules out putting Saakashvili on trial

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

There won’t be any political prosecutions in Georgia, says newly elected president Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Giorgi Margvelashvili, who is to be the fourth president of Georgia after the inauguration on November 17, promises that there won’t be political prosecution in the country. Monday he appeared next to Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili at a post- […]

Naming of new Georgian PM postponed until Saturday

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili has again postponed the naming of his successor, saying it needs to be discussed in the Georgian Dream political council first. Ivanishvili said Monday at a press conference that he hopes the candidate for new prime […]

New Georgian president will be sworn in Nov 17

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , |

Newly elected president Giorgi Margvelashvili will be sworn in November 17. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s new president will sworn in on November 17. The location of the inauguration and other details are unknown. After the swearing-in ceremony, the new president will be empowered to use his authority granted by the Constitution, and the […]

Margvelashvili won among Georgian soldiers in Afghanistan

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Margvelashvili from Georgian Dream won a majority of votes also among Georgian ISAF-soldiers in Afghanistan. (CEC.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian Dream candidate Giorgi Margvelashvili received most votes among Georgian soldiers in Afghanistan. Margvelashvili won over Davit Bakradze, from the National Movement, at two election precincts for Georgian soldiers serving in the NATO-led […]

Margvelashvili celebrates as Bakradze concedes defeat

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Giorgi Margvelashvili Sunday night greeted jubilant supporters at the Georgian Dream coalition’s headquarters. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Giorgi Margvelashvili thanked all his supporters and Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili Sunday night, after exit polls showed he had won the Georgian presidential election in the first round. “Thanks to every citizen […] to the members of [my campaign] staff, […]

Margvelashvili 62%, Bakradze 22%, as 95% of votes counted

By | October 28th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Margvelashvili (left) had 62 % support as 95 % percent of votes were counted. Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili (right). (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian Dream candidate Giorgi Margvelashvili has received 62 percent of the votes in the Georgian presidential election after 95% of the votes have been counted, Georgia’s Central Election Committee (CEC) announced. This is slightly less than two […]

Exit polls show Georgian Dream winning in first round

By | October 27th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

Two exit polls show that Georgian Dream candidate Giorgi Margvelashvili has won the presidential election. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian Dream coalition’s candidate Giorgi Margvelashvili is predicted to win Georgia’s presidential election in the first round. Two exit polls show Margvelashvili winning clearly. According to an exit poll by the German company GFK on the order of […]

Low voter turnout, but election’s legitimacy not in question

By | October 27th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

At 3 pm Sunday voter turnout was 32%, 13 less than last year. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Despite low turnout, the legitimacy of today’s election is not in question, says Georgia’s Central Election Commission (CEC). By 15:00, 32 percent had voted. In 2012’s parliamentary election, the turnout at 15:00 was 45 percent. A spokesperson for […]

Candidates cast their vote in Georgian presidential poll

By | October 27th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Giorgi Margvelashvili said Georgia held an unprecedented peaceful election. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The main candidates in Georgia’s presidential election Sunday cast their vote. Giorgi Margvelashvili from the Georgian Dream coalition arrived at the precinct with his daughter. He said he has voted for a step forward for Georgia. Margvelashvili […]

Voter turnout at noon highest in Racha and Guria

By | October 27th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

Frontrunner Giorgi Margvelashvili from Georgian Dream. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–At noon, voter turnout in Georgia’s presidential election was highest in the Racha region (29%) in the mid north part of the country and in Guria (24%) in the south west. Overall turnout at noon was 17 %, as just over 600 000 out of 3.5 million who are […]

Burjanadze thanks interior minister for not interfering

By | October 27th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Nino Burjanadze rallying supporters in Telavi October 24, 2013. (Photo published on Burjanadze’s Facebook page.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Nino Burjanadze, presidential candidate and leader of the Democratic Movement, on Saturday sent an open letter of thanks to the interior minister which was published by the media. A day before the election, she sent a ‘thank you’ letter […]

Georgia goes to the polls to elect its fourth president

By | October 27th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

Voting-papers being prepared at precinct no 4 in Tbilisi on Sunday. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Today, Georgia is holding presidential election. This is the sixth presidential election in the country, but since Mikheil Saakashvili and Eduard Shevardnadze were elected twice, people will elect the fourth president of Georgia. There are 23 candidates […]

1500 prisoners will be able to vote in Georgia’s election

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

1 576 prisoners will be entitled to vote Sunday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Media outlets registered with the Central Election Commission (CEC) will have the right to observe the election in prisons. 1 576 prisoners and detainees are entitled to vote. The Prison Ministry on Saturday expressed full readiness to conduct the […]

South Ossetia blocks Georgians from crossing in order to vote

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

New razor wire marks the Russian-imposed border line in Ditsi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The de facto South Ossetian government has imposed restrictions for Georgian citizens along the demarcation line. The Interior Ministry on Saturday issued a statement expressing concern about the de facto government’s decision. The Ministry recalls […]

Over a thousand foreign observers for Georgia’s election

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

Voters waiting in line in last year’s parliamentary election. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–60 local and 65 international organizations will observe Sunday’s presidential election. The Central Election Commission published information about the observers on Saturday, after finishing the process of registration of organizations and media. […]

Guards protecting election posters in prison

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Sozar Subari. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Special guards are protecting election posters of one of the presidential candidates in a prison, to prevent prisoners from tearing them down. Under Georgian law, every person who is detained but has not yet received a verdict, and those who have […]

Ivanishvili promises Georgians a fair election

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili Friday delivered his address to voters two days before the presidential elections, saying that in the last twenty years, this is the first time people have a chance to change their president through election. The […]

‘Goodbye, President!’

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Outside the president’s residence in Avlabari, Tbilisi. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A movement called Patriots held a small rally on Friday to say goodbye to President Mikheil Saakashvili and thank him for his nine years of service. A few tens of people came carrying posters and flags outside Saakashvili’s official residence in […]

Break-in attempt at election precincts in Georgia

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

TBILIISI, DFWatch–Unknown people Friday night attempted to break into two election precincts in Nadzaladevi, a district in Tbilisi. Police detained them before they managed to break in. The precincts were not damaged. The reason for the break-in attempt is not yet […]

Former intelligence official detained for election fraud

By | October 26th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Ministry of Internal Affairs in Georgia Friday detained the former chairman of the Constitutional Security Department (known as Kudi) of the Autonomous Republic of Adjara, who is accused with organizing election fraud. Temur Pataridze is charged […]

Open Society report highlights progress in Georgia’s reforms

By | October 25th, 2013|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , |

Minister for Euro-Integration Alexi Petriashvili (center) and head of Open Society Georgia Keti Khutsishvili (right). (OSGF.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Open Society Foundations in Georgia and Armenia say in a new report that there is “some progress” in several areas of Georgia’s efforts to fulfill its European aspirations and existing challenges during. The report, which was presented a few days ago, […]

Saakashvili grants citizenship to \more Georgians in Turkey

By | October 25th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Outgoing President Mikheil Saakashvili on a previous trip to Turkey. (Photo published by the president’s administration.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Saakashvili has granted Georgian citizenship to more than a thousand Turks. According to the State Service Development Agency, Saakashvili granted citizenship to Turks under special rules, which means that they will receive citizenship […]

Ivanishvili to name successor next week

By | October 25th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Outgoing Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili says he will name his successor on Tuesday or Wednesday next week. Giorgi Kvirikashvili, the economy minister and one of the possible candidates, is now excluded from the list, going by what the PM said, […]

NATO envoy compliments Georgian defense minister

By | October 25th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

James Appathurai. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–NATO envoy James Appathurai compliments Georgia’s defense minister in a Facebook update after meeting him on Thursday. Defense Minister Irakli Alasania participated in NATO’s ISAF meeting on Thursday at NATO headquarters. After the meeting, he met […]

Georgia’s foreign trade shifts toward export

By | October 25th, 2013|Categories: Economy, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s foreign trade turnover fell by a negligible 0.1 percent in the first nine months of 2013, compared to last year, to USD 7 585 million. USD 2 019 out of this was export, which is 14 percent more than last year, while the import was USD 5 […]

Interview with the UK Ambassador to Georgia

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Alexandra Hall Hall, the United Kingdom’s Ambassador to Georgia. (Embassy photo.) DF Watch sat down for talk with the recently appointed Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Georgia, Alexandra Hall Hall. DF Watch: The political situation in Georgia is interesting now, especially since we have presidential elections coming. What are your expectations? […]

Poll shows Georgia’s election heading for a second round

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–According to a new survey conducted by the American company Greenberg, Quinlan, Rosner Research, 43 percent would vote for the Georgian Dream candidate Giorgi Marvelashvili, while 23 percent would vote for the National Movement party’s Davit […]

Georgian Dream gets 58% in new poll

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

Giorgi Margvelashvili, Georgian Dream candidate for president. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–According to a survey conducted by Research and Consult Center Psiqo Proeqti, 57.6 percent support the Georgian Dream coalition candidate for president, Giorgi Margvelashvili, while 11.8 percent support Davit Bakradze, the National Movement candidate. […]

Uncertainty about plans for new mosque in Batumi

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: Minorities, News|Tags: |

The Mosque in Khulo, Adjara. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In the center of Batumi stands the large Ortajame Mosque. It was built in the 1860s, and Muslims gather here for Friday prayers. The problem is, there isn’t enough room for everybody inside, so many people are having to conduct their prayers outside. […]

Council of Europe elections observers arrive in Georgia Friday

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–A delegation from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) will arrive in Georgia October 25 for a three day visit to observe the presidential election. Until Election Day, October 27, the 26 delegation members will meet with the […]

Government to cut the price of hepatitis C treatment

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: Society|Tags: |

Minister of Health, Davit Sergeenko. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Health Ministry will start a new program to reduces the price of treatment for hepatitis C . Health Minister Davit Sergeenko said at a press conference Wednesday that treatment for hepatitis C will be free for prisoners and become cheaper for […]

Respecting human rights in Georgia

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: Minorities, News|Tags: , |

I am writing this letter in response to the letter published in Kviris Palitra and Georgian Journal under the title “Respecting Georgian Traditions”. I am a Georgian citizen, an attorney, and the producer of the show "Georgian Legend," which introduced traditional Georgian singing and dance to millions of people around the world. As all who know [...]

Bildt and Sikorski encourage Georgia’s EU integration

By | October 23rd, 2013|Categories: Europe, News|Tags: , , |

Radoslaw Sikorski, Foreign Minister of Poland, Bidzina Ivanishvili, Prime Minister of Georgia, and Carl Bildt, Foreign Minister of Sweden. (Ivanishvili’s Facebook page.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili on Wednesday met with the foreign ministers of Sweden and Poland. The meeting was closed to the media, but a joint press conference was held afterward. The PM said the guests were interested in the ongoing political […]

Labor Party leader threatens to rally supporters after election

By | October 23rd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Labor Party leader and candidate for president Shalva Natelashvili. (Photo posted on Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Labor Party leader and candidate for president Shalva Natelashvili says he will start protest rallies if he loses the upcoming election, but if he wins Georgia will ‘brighten.’ On Monday, Natelashvili presented his election program, and said that […]

Saakashvili moves out of unofficial residence

By | October 23rd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

President Mikheil Saakashvili has moved out of his house in northern Tbilisi. (President’s Facebook page.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Mikheil Saakashvili on Tuesday moved out of their house in the Didi Dighomi district of Tbilisi and moved into a house in the city center. Saakashvili and his wife Sandra Roelofs personally took part in the moving. The First Lady said most […]

New commission will study Lapankuri border shooting

By | October 22nd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–A newly appointed commission will next week start studying a special operation which claimed 14 lives on the Georgia-Russia border in August 2012. The incident took place in the last few months of Saakashvili’s government. After the change of government […]

Depardieu on low key visit to Tbilisi

By | October 22nd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Gérard Depardieu stayed at the restaurant Puris Sakhli in Tbilisi for about one hour. (Photo posted on Facebook by the restaurant.) TBILISI, DFWatch–French actor Gérard Depardieu, who recently became a Russian citizen, was spotted at a restaurant in Tbilisi yesterday. Depardieu arrived Monday morning at Tbilisi airport, and it was first reported that he stayed in the transit area […]

A sixth depot of undistributed refugee supplies discovered

By | October 22nd, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

(Refugee Ministry.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Refugee Ministry says there has been discovered a sixth depot where equipment, home appliances and various supplies for refugees has been kept since 2008. The humanitarian goods were this time discovered in Bolnisi. The goods should have been […]

Ivanishvili to name candidate for Tbilisi mayor

By | October 22nd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili says he will name his preferred candidate for Tbilisi Mayor before he leaves his post. In an interview with Imedi TV, the PM explained that before leaving office, he may agree with the party council about who that […]

Number of charged and convicted fell 59% in Q3

By | October 21st, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The number of people charged with or convicted of a crime has been reduced by 59.3 percent in the third quarter of 2013, compared to the same period last year, according to the Prison Ministry. The number of people charged or placed in jail […]

NGO report lists gov’t car purchases

By | October 21st, 2013|Categories: NGO news|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Government bodies in Georgia have purchased 2 146 cars from January 2011 to July 2013, a new a report by Georgian Young Lawyer’s Association shows. Six out of ten of the most expensive cars were purchased by the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) […]

More than 150 prisoners recommended for pardon

By | October 21st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Public Defender Ucha Nanuashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The pardon commission has sent the president a list of more than 150 prisoners who they recommend be pardoned. Public Defender Ucha Nanuashvili told journalists after a commission session on Sunday that 120 of the prisoners will be released […]

Georgian soldiers cast their vote in Afghanistan

By | October 21st, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

(Ministry of Defense.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian soldiers serving in the NATO-led ISAF mission have voted at two precincts in Afghanistan. Usually, elections are held in Afghanistan a few days before Election Day, which this year is October 27 for Georgia and for all the other voting […]

Storm on Georgia’s Black Sea coast causes damage

By | October 21st, 2013|Categories: Environment, News|Tags: |

Batumi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A storm on the Black Sea coast damaged the boulevard in the Georgian resort city Batumi Sunday and caused 400 meters of a running path to collapse. According to Batumi Mayor Jemal Ananindze, it could cost several million lari to repair the damaged […]

In Georgia, rallies continue against Russian policy

By | October 20th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

People rallied in Telavi (pictured) and 24 other places against Russia’s policy toward Georgia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Rallies against the ‘creeping occupation’ and the Sochi Winter Olympics continue in Georgia. Saturday, there were protests in 25 different cities and towns all over the country. Despite the rain, youth protested in Batumi, a city on the Black Sea […]

3.1 million voters registered ahead of Georgia’s election

By | October 20th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Eka Azarashvili, spokesperson for the Central Election Commission. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Central Election Commission (CEC) annonced Saturday that there are 3 537 719 registered voters ahead of the October 27 presidential election in Georgia. Ekaterine Azarashvili, press spokesperson for CEC, said at a press conference that the number […]

Georgian candidates confront each other in two TV debates

By | October 19th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , , |

National Movement candidate for president, Davit Bakradze. (Channel 1.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Public Broadcaster October 17 and 18 hosted two TV debates between presidential candidates. Only qualified subjects participated in the debates, those who were presented by the political parties, which receive state funding. There are […]

Why ‘no’ to the Eurasian Customs Union

By | October 19th, 2013|Categories: Opinion|Tags: , |

Nino Evgenidze is Executive Director of the Economic Policy Research Center. “The Eurasian Customs Union in the framework of Eurasian Economic Development” – the name of this union mainly has an economic connotation to it. However, everyone agrees that its main goal is political. Spheres of competence of the union prove this argument: […]

Georgia’s foreign trade was stable Jan-Sept 2013

By | October 19th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in January to September fell by 0.1 percent, compared to the same period last year. The total amount of turnover in the first ten months this year was USD 7 585 million. USD 2 019 million out of this was export, which […]

Gov’t in Georgia plans new retirement saving system

By | October 18th, 2013|Categories: Society|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia plans to introduce a system for retirement savings that will include every citizen in the country. Giorgi Tabuashvili, Deputy Finance Minister, on Thursday met with the parliamentary opposition to discuss the 2014 budget, […]

New details in death of Georgian PM

By | October 18th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

From a demonstration two years ago. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–There are new details in the investigation into the death of former Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania in 2005, which may change the official version of how he died. Brother of the deceased PM, Giorgi Zhvania, says that important new evidence has come […]

Opposition politician to sue Ivanishvili for USD 600 mill

By | October 18th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Giorgi Targamadze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The leader of Christian Democrats plans to sue against Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili for defamation and will demand one billion lari (USD 600 million) in compensation. Ivanishvili Thursday met with newspapers editors to talk about the upcoming […]

Tbilisi enganges Europe, Europe engages an Eastern neighbor

By | October 18th, 2013|Categories: Opinion|Tags: |

Ilia Roubanis. In the recent International Parliamentary Conference that took place under the aegis of the Parliament of Georgia and the United Nations Development programme in Tbilisi on October 7, 2013, the focus was on the Vilnius Summit. Suitably, the Georgian delegates, […]

Ivanishvili confident ahead of presidential election

By | October 17th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili appeared full of confidence while meeting newspaper editors Thursday, vowing that his coalition, Georgian Dream, is going to win the presidential election. Ivanishvili said he is sure that there won’t be a need […]

Georgia’s CEC lifts partial photo ban at election precincts

By | October 17th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

Voters in line in last year’s parliamentary election. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Central Election Commission has lifted restrictions on the use of photo and video cameras at election precincts. In a statement, CEC writes that it has revoked a resolution by the commission which prohibited the filming or photographing of voting […]

Security Council secretary to resign if Ivanishvili bloc wins presidency

By | October 17th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: , |

Giga Bokeria. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Giga Bokeria, Secretary of the Security Council, says he will leave the post if Georgian Dream candidate Giorgi Margvelashvili wins the presidential election. Margvelashvili on Wednesday told journalists that in case of a Georgian Dream victory […]

President Saakashvili signs constitutional amendments

By | October 17th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

President Mikheil Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The constitutional amendments which reduce the power of the prime minister have come into force, after the president signed a bill which was passed by parliament on October 4. The amendment is published on the website of the legal gazette, matsne […]

Georgian gov’t plans 12 mill USD in development of border areas

By | October 16th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Davit Narmania. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Minister for Regional Development and Infrastructure says that investments in the amount of 20 million lari (USD 12 million) will be necessary to solve the problems locals are having who living in villages bordering with the Russian […]

Former Georgian defense minister detained for 40 days in France

By | October 16th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Davit Kezerashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Defense Minister Davit Kezerashvili, who was detained recently in France, has been placed in 40-day detention until his extradition request has been processed. According to French press, Kezerashvili was planning to travel to Albania from Nice […]

NATO envoy met Georgian Euro-integration minister

By | October 16th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

James Appathurai. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Alexi Petriashvili, Minister for Euro and Euro-Atlantic integration, yesterday met with NATO envoy James Appathurai, who recounted the meeting on his official Facebook page. “He made a clear, realistic and convincing case for why, if/when the upcoming […]

ISFED lists violations in Georgia’s election campaign

By | October 16th, 2013|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , , |

Nino Lomjaria, head of ISFED. TBILISI, DFWatch–The fifth interim report of International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED), covering the period from September 8 to October 6, identified 5 cases of political intimidation, 3 cases of obstructing the election campaign and other […]

Georgian Dream tops list of party donations

By | October 16th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian Dream party in September received more than half a million lari in donations (about USD 350 000). In October, the amount of donations was only 1500 lari (about USD 900). Meanwhile, the party of Nino Burjanadze, the Democratic Movement, […]

Georgia and the Eurasian Union

By | October 16th, 2013|Categories: Opinion|Tags: , |

Michael Fuenfzig is Assistant Professor at Tbilisi State University’s School of Economics. A few weeks ago, speaking at a press conference, Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili floated the idea of Georgia joining the Eurasian Union. Although he later backtracked on his statements, the cat was out of the bag. Predictably, the United National Movement slammed […]

Strasbourg to announce ruling in Georgia vs Russia next year

By | October 15th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg next year will announce its ruling in a case Georgia has lodged against Russia concerning the deportation of Georgian citizens from Russia seven years ago. This was conveyed in a message from the […]

Former Georgian defense minister detained in France

By | October 15th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Davit Kezerashvili was defense minister during the 2008 Russia-Georgia war. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former Georgian defense minister has been detained in France. According to the Interior Ministry, Davit Kezerashvili, who served in President Saakashvili’s government, was detained on Monday in France in a joint operation between Interpol’s Paris […]

Prison minister meets family of dead prisoner

By | October 15th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Sozar Subari. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prison Minister Sozar Subari Monday arrived in Senaki, in western Georgia, to visit a family whose son is said to have committed suicide in prison. It was the demand of the father of Goga Dzvelaia that he wouldn’t bury his son until Subari […]

Ivanishvili to name successor first week of November

By | October 15th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian PM Bidzina Ivanishvili promises to name his successor in the first week of November, after the presidential election. In an interview with Channel 1 on Monday, he said that people will know who the candidate for new prime minister is in […]

Ivanishvili says Georgia might boycott Olympics

By | October 15th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishivli says that ‘if it becomes necessary’, Georgia will refuse to take part in the upcoming Sochi Winter Olympics, but that more time is needed to make a decision. The PM said this during an interview on Channel 1’s […]

Saakashvili gives citizenship to 3000 Georgians in Turkey

By | October 14th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Mikheil Saakashvili says he will grant Georgian citizenship to 3 000 more Georgians living in Turkey. Saakashvili was visiting the town Sakaria and the village Nusetie on Monday to meet with ethnic Georgians. He recalled that a few weeks […]

Saakashvili’s party leaves the inter-agency commission

By | October 14th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

Minister of Justice Thea Tsulukiani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The National Movement party has left the inter-agency commission, which controls election processes in the country, as a sign of protest. UNM members claim the commission chairman, Justice Minister Thea Tsulukiani, said at a closed session meeting […]

No confirmation of claim Adeishvili is in Hungary

By | October 14th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Zurab Adeishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–It is unknown in Georgia whether former Justice Minister Zurab Adeishvili is in Hungary and whether he was appointed as advisor to the Hungarian president. What is known is that Giorgi Sabanadze, the former chairman of Tbilisi Development Fund, […]

Several rallies in Georgia to protest against Russian occupation

By | October 14th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Sabina from Sweden performing in Tbilisi Sunday. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A number of protest rallies and events were held in Georgia last weekend to protest against Russian occupation and Georgia’s participation in the Sochi Winter Olympics. On Saturday, there was a rally outside the government offices in Tbilisi, where […]

One man dies in mining accident

By | October 14th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

A Tkibuli mine. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A 33-year-old has worker after a shaft ceiling collapsed following a micro blast in the coal mine in Tkibuli, a town in western Georgia. According to Valeri Kukhalashvili, Director General of Sakhnakhshiri GIG Ltd, which owns the coal mines […]

Police operation claims two lives, four wounded

By | October 13th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–One police special unit employee died during an operation to apprehend a man suspected of burglary. The suspect also died in the shooting. According to the Interior Ministry, employees of the Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti regional police department […]

Three detained at Bakradze campaign rally

By | October 13th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Three former political prisoners were detained in Batumi on Saturday during a campaign rally for Davit Bakradze, the presidential candidate for the National Movement party. Jimsher Kurtskhalidze, Jemal Buadze and Merab Gorgadze were taken away from […]

Saakashvili urges gov’t to continue large scale projects

By | October 13th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Mikheil Saakashvili, President of Georgia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili asks the new government, which took power a year ago, to continue large projects started under him. Saakashvili, speaking after an awards ceremony for a TV show on Friday, said a new prognosis by the […]

Georgian finance minister disputes IMF’s reduced growth prognosis

By | October 12th, 2013|Categories: Economy, News|Tags: , |

Nodar Khaduri, Finance Minister of Georgia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government of Georgia disagrees with a prognosis by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) indicating that Georgia’s economic growth will experience a further slowdown. Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri said Friday that the government has been […]

Ex-official wanted in Georgia given asylum in EU

By | October 12th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Sabanadze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A court in Italy has released the former chairman of Tbilisi Development Fund, which means he won’t be extradited to Georgia. Lawyers of Giorgi Sabanadze informed journalists that the reason he won’t be extradited is that he has received […]

Georgia preparing Interpol search for jihad video suspect

By | October 12th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Interior Minister informs that very soon Interpol will issue a red alert for the search for the man suspected of uploading two videos to Youtube threatening jihad against Georgia. The ministry is preparing the necessary documentation to send […]

Tbilisi City Hall to buy apples from conflict zone

By | October 12th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi City Hall plans to purchase apples from villages close to the Russian-controlled territories. The plan is the initiative of the Mayor of Tbilisi, and the goal is to help people living in the conflict zone who otherwise would be left without an income […]

Georgia will not open election precinct in Russia

By | October 11th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , |

Davit Zalkaniani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–There will not be opened election precincts in the Russian Federation for Georgia’s presidential election on October 27. Davit Zalkaliani, First Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, told journalists that there are a number of difficulties involved when […]

Georgian fruit and vegetables to be exported to Russia

By | October 11th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia will allow export of Georgian fruit and vegetables to its market. Shalva Pipia, Minister of Agriculture, said Thursday that a document has been signed by the parties which lifts all restrictions on Georgian export of nuts, grapes, apple, pea, […]

Farmers demand payment for wine grapes

By | October 11th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–More than 100 farmers demand to be paid for grapes they delivered to the wine maker Shildi. Two days ago, the farmers rallied outside the plant demanding their payment immediately. They told journalists that many of them should be paid thousands […]

IMF expects growth to slow down in Georgia

By | October 11th, 2013|Categories: Economy, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has downgraded its prognosis for Georgia’s economic growth this year from 6 to 2.5 percent. In the beginning of 2013, IMF assumed Georgia would have 6 percent growth, but then reduced the prognosis to 4 percent […]

Georgia Security Council deputy resigns

By | October 11th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Batu Kutelia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The deputy secretary of Georgia’s National Security Council, a former ambassador of Georgia to the United States, has resigned. Batu Kutelia did not comment about his resignation, but Tamar Kintsurashvili, the second deputy secretary of the Security […]

Russia’s South Ossetia fences now stretch 35 km

By | October 10th, 2013|Categories: Caucasus region, News|Tags: , |

The barbed wire bundles in Dvani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The length of barbed wire and fences along the delineation line with the breakaway region South Ossetia is now 35 kilometers. Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze says 65 Georgian families have been affected as result of the installation of barbed wire […]

Boycott Sochi petition has gathered over 8000 signatures

By | October 10th, 2013|Categories: News, Sport|Tags: , |

Paata Zakareishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A petition calling for Georgia to boycott the Sochi Winter Olympics has gathered over 8000 signatures. The petition was started by local non-governmental organizations. ISFED and Transparency International Georgia do not exclude that there will […]

Georgia to join NATO Response Force in 2015

By | October 10th, 2013|Categories: News, Security|Tags: |

Anders Fogh Rasmussen. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia will join NATO Response Force (NRF) in 2015, NATO’s Secretary General says. At a monthly press conference, Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that from next month the alliance will conduct a major exercise in Poland and the Baltics states. […]

Georgian candidates on the campaign trail

By | October 10th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Presidential candidate Nestan Kirtadze wants free natural gas for people near the conflict zone. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Less than three weeks left before the presidential election in Georgia, candidates are busy conducting their election campaign. Davit Bakradze, the candidate for the National Movement, on Wednesday met with people in the Racha region. He opened a new […]

Dead prisoner’s body examined, no trace of violence

By | October 10th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The family of Goga Dzvelaia, a 16-year old who died in a cell in Kutaisi prison a few days ago, has conducted an independent examination of the body. It was conducted by Maya Nikolaishvili, who did an external examination of the body and took photos. […]

Ivanishvili turns down request for Security Council session

By | October 9th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Georgia’s National Security Council. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s prime minister has refused to participate in a session of the country’s National Security Council. In a written statement the PM and the speaker of parliament write that they believe attending the session will be like ‘participation […]

‘Smiling Georgia’ canceled, some elderly left toothless

By | October 9th, 2013|Categories: Society|Tags: |

Minister of Health Davit Sergeenko. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s new government says it will not continue a plan launched by President Saakashvili two years ago called ‘Smiling Georgia’, which involved fixing the teeth of elderly people. Minister of Health Davit Sergeenko said at a press conference […]

Saakashvili: Minister must be held to account for prisoner death

By | October 9th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Andro Barnovi, head of the president’s administration. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A 16-year old prisoner has died in Prison No 2 in Kutaisi, Georgia’s second largest city. Preliminary information indicates that it was a suicide, but the teenager’s family calls it a murder. According to the Prison Ministry, the deceased was brought […]

Georgia tops media freedom list in Eastern Partnership

By | October 9th, 2013|Categories: Media, News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia tops a new survey of media freedom among those eastern European countries that are not members of EU but associated through the Eastern Partnership. The report is called Media Freedom Index in Eastern Partners Countries and was presented in Moldova […]

Audit Office claims found further violations by Burjanadze’s party

By | October 9th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Nino Burjanadze says her party will cooperate with the Audit Office. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The State Audit Office has again asked for documentation about the financial activity of presidential candidate Nino Burjanadze’s party. The Audit Office monitored the election campaign for two month between July 1 and September 9 and found […]

Petition calling on Georgia to boycott Sochi Olympics

By | October 8th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–A petition launched today in Georgia demanding to boycott the Sochi Olympics has quickly gathered more than 1500 signatures. The petition, which originates in Tbilisi’s NGO circles, appeals to Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, Sports Minister Levan Kipiani […]

Russia faults seven Georgian wine producers

By | October 8th, 2013|Categories: Economy, News|Tags: , |

Levan Davitashvili, head of Georgia’s National Wine Agency. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia has refused to let seven Georgian wine producers export 28 types of wines to the Russian market ‘due to non-compliance with hygienic standards.’ The official website of the Russian consumer protection agency Rospotrebnadzor published a list […]

Two tourists found after rescue operation

By | October 8th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

Two Israeli tourists who got lost in the mountains have been rescued. (police.ge) TBILISI, DFWatch–Rescue workers have recovered two tourists from Israel who were lost for two days in a mountainous part of Georgia. According to the Interior Ministry, the tourists were discovered in Mestia, Svaneti. They left from the village Janbeshi toward the village […]

Burjanadze wants to punish ‘creators’ of 2008 war

By | October 8th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

Nino Burjanadze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Nino Burjanadze, presidential candidate for Democratic Movement, on Monday presented her election program. Burjanadze explained that the program contains all important areas for the country’s development, and foreign and domestic affairs. […]

Change of prosecutor in Akhalaia case, again

By | October 8th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Prosecutor Ia Darjania asked to be taken off the Bacho Akhalaia case because of family connections. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–There has twice been a change of prosecutor in the case against former prison minister Bacho Akhalaia for the 2006 prison riot. Prosecutor Ia Darjania on Monday asked the judge to replace her, because she cannot make independent decisions […]

Georgia weighing for and against participation in Sochi Olympics

By | October 7th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–News that a military pilot declared a hero by Russia for his service in the Russia-Georgia war in August 2008 will be torch bearer for the Sochi Winter Olympics has caused a strong reaction in Georgia. The announcement has increased […]

Poti port closed due to storm

By | October 7th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

Poti. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Four a fourth day, the port in Poti on the Black Sea has been closed for ships due to a storm. According to local media, the unloading of ships has been in progress for the last few days, but fifteen ships which should have arrived have been turned […]

Tbilisoba warmed crowds in bad weather

By | October 7th, 2013|Categories: Society|Tags: |

Mtsvadi, traditional barbecue, at Tbilisoba. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Despite chilly weather, the Tbilisoba drew crowds in the old part of the capital last weekend. The Georgian capital’s annual festival sported events like tasting traditional Georgian food, taking a ride on a horse and enjoying the sights of old […]

Russian 2008 war hero to be Olympic torch bearer

By | October 7th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–One of the first Olympic torch bearers for the Sochi Olympics will be Ivan Nachaev, who Russia has granted status as hero for his participation in the Russia-Georgia war of August 2008. According to Russian media, Nachaev is a pilot, whose plane was […]

Saakashvili reelected UNM leader, presents new party banner

By | October 6th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , , |

The new National Movement party banner. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The National Movement in Georgia Saturday voted to keep Mikheil Saakashvili as party leader, and to change the party symbol to set it off from the national flag. UNM’s symbol, a five-cross flag, was made the national flag in January 2004 following […]

Poll confirms Ivanishvili coalition’s lead

By | October 6th, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: |

A Greenberg, Quinlan, Rosner poll confirms that Giorgi Margvelashvili is likely to win the presidential election. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A new party poll ordered by the president’s administration shows that 43 percent of Georgians support the Georgian Dream coalition’s candidate for president, while 22 percent supports the National Movement candidate. The poll, which was conducted […]

Soon leaving, Ivanishvili looks ahead to the next twenty years

By | October 5th, 2013|Categories: News, Politics|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Ivanishvili claims he has fulfilled all the plans he had for the first two to three years after going into politics, and now moves on to the next stage: plans for the next 20 years. Ivanishvili said this during a campaign stop Friday […]

15% more visitors to Georgia in September

By | October 5th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–15.1 percent more visitors came to Georgia in September 2013 compared to same period last year. According to Interior Ministry, 507 082 persons visited the country in September, while 4 075 600 visitors came to Georgia in the first nine months of the […]

State money siphoned off in construction of new parliament

By | October 5th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

The pillars of the new parliament in Kutaisi. (Pirveli.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The investigative service of the Finance Ministry has charged the director of the company that built the new parliament in Kutaisi with appropriation of a state money. According to the Investigative Service information, March 17, 2010, Meno International […]

Georgia considered free in terms of Internet

By | October 4th, 2013|Categories: NGO news|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–In a new survey of Internet freedom published by the US-based human rights organization Freedom House, Georgia receives 26 points and is listed in twelfth place among 60 countries measured with status as free. According to the survey, it is the […]

Georgia reduces power of National Security Council

By | October 4th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giga Bokeria. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s governing coalition may reduce the powers of the National Security Council and the council secretary to bring legislation in line with the constitution. Constitutional amendments which were passed by the National Movement party when it was […]

Georgia got help from US in jihad video investigation

By | October 4th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Interior Minister Irakli Gharibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Minister of Interior Irakli Gharibashvili says Georgia received assistance from the US in the investigation about the so-called jihad videos, and the government is preparing to announce an international search for the suspect through Interpol. […]

Ivanishvili’s won’t visit the US as prime minister

By | October 4th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili says he will not manage to visit the US before he leaves politics. He said during a meeting with journalists on Wednesday that the visit should have been held in November, but ‘probably it won’t take place.’ […]

Saakashvili pardons 18 000 probationers

By | October 4th, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

People queued outside the president’s palace to apply for a pardon. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Saakashvili has pardoned about 18 000 people on probation or already finished serving their sentence. The president signed a decree which has been sent to the appropriate bodies in order to be enforced. Andro Barnovi, head of the […]

Saakashvili doubts veracity of government’s jihad video theory

By | October 3rd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Andro Barnovi, spokesperson for President Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A spokesperson for President Saakashvili says his administration distrusts the theory presented by the government today about who was behind the jihad threat video, claiming the ministry is telling lies in an attempt to assure people that the case can […]

Ivanishvili debated journalists in live broadcast

By | October 3rd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili debating journalists Wednesday. (Ivanishvili’s Facebook page.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili held a televised round table discussion with Georgian journalists on Wednesday. The debate turned into a squabble as the PM demanded answers about things the journalists have written. After a similar TV debate […]

EU spokesman: Georgia will not join the Eurasian Union

By | October 3rd, 2013|Categories: Europe, News|Tags: , |

Boris Yaroshevich. (Civil Service Bureau.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A spokesman for EU’s delegation to Georgia says although Russia has increased its pressure on Eastern Partnership countries, there is no risk that Georgia will join the Eurasian Union, because the Georgian government’s stance is clear. In 2010, the […]

Candidate numbers assigned in Georgian election

By | October 3rd, 2013|Categories: Elections '12-'13, News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Central Election Commission in Georgia has assigned which number each candidate in the October 27 presidential election will have on the ballot-paper. Three parties have retained the numbers they had in the previous election, a privilege afforded […]

Plan to bar Georgians from leaving country put on hold

By | October 3rd, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Lawmakers in Georgia have retracted a bill to make it possible for authorities to bar Georgians from leaving the country without specifying the reason. MPs Irine Imerlishvili and Zurab Abashidze said they were revoking the bill in order to improve it, […]

NATO and EU concerned about Russian borderization

By | October 2nd, 2013|Categories: Caucasus region, News|Tags: , , |

Anders Fogh Rasmussen. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and EU’s foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton express concern about the recent actions by Russian soldiers who are expanding the de facto border around the breakaway region South Ossetia and installing […]

Russia was asked about Georgian occupation at PACE

By | October 2nd, 2013|Categories: Caucasus region, News|Tags: |

Member of parliament Tina Khidasheli. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia avoided questions about the occupation of Georgian territory during a debate of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg. Georgia’s delegation was not given an opportunity to ask questions. Speaker for the Russian […]

Saakashvili warns against Russian moves to take lands in west

By | October 2nd, 2013|Categories: Caucasus region, News|Tags: , |

President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Mikheil Saakashvili claims Russia is planning to put the Baku-Supsa pipeline, Ganmukhuri and other territories in the Samegerelo region behind barbed wire. Saakashvili said Tuesday that he believes the moving of barbed wires and fences […]

One man is detained for ‘jihad videos’ against Georgia

By | October 2nd, 2013|Categories: News, Security|Tags: |

Minister of Internal Affairs Irakli Gharibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Interior Minister Irakli Gharibashvili on Tuesday provided details about a several month long investigation into two jihad videos posted on Youtube a few months ago with threats against Georgian soldiers in Afghanistan. His comments were a response […]

Georgia’s economy grew 1.1 percent in August – estimate

By | October 1st, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s estimated real GDP growth rate amounted to 1.1 percent in August 2013. For the first eight months of 2013, the same figure was 1.6 percent, according to Georgia’s National Statistics Department, GeoStat. GeoStat’s monthly rapid estimates […]

EUMM concerned about South Ossetia borderization

By | October 1st, 2013|Categories: Caucasus region, News|Tags: , |

The razor wire block in Dvani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The EU Monitoring Mission to Georgia Tuesday expressed concern about the installation of barbed wire by Russian soldiers in the villages Dvani and Ditsi at the border line around the breakaway region South Ossetia. Toivo Klaar, the new head of EUMM, […]

Groups to study Georgia’s prisoner abuse

By | October 1st, 2013|Categories: News, Prisoner abuse|Tags: |

The release of the videos shocked Georgians one year ago. TBILISI, DFWatch–Local and international human rights organizations are to examine the footage of prisoner abuse, one year after it created a firestorm of criticism in Georgia. A handful of videos were leaked to the media by a former prison guard less than two weeks […]

53 election precincts abroad for Georgian election

By | October 1st, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–53 election precincts will be open at locations abroad for Georgians there who want to vote in the presidential election on October 27. According to the Central Election Commission, the highest number of precincts will be in Greece […]

Preparations continue for Georgia-Turkey 154 kV transmission line

By | October 1st, 2013|Categories: Economy, News|Tags: , |

Energy Minister Kakhi Kaladze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A new 154 kilovolt transmission line will be built between Georgia and Turkey. Energy Minister Kakhi Kaladze and Nikolay Nikolov, Vice Director of Energo-Pro Georgia signed the memorandum of understanding Monday. A memorandum was first signed in 2009, […]

Protesters set up wire block outside Ivanishvili’s house

By | October 1st, 2013|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The organization Droa protested outside Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili’s business center Monday evening, installing barbed wires at the entrance. Police prohibited them from blocking the road with wires, so they placed them on the side walk. […]