Yearly Archives: 2014

Four environmental activists detained outside city council in Tbilisi

By | December 30th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: , , |

Four environmental activists were detained for demonstrating outside Tbilisi City Council on Tuesday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Four environmentalists were detained outside the city council building in Tbilisi on Wednesday. The four were demonstrating against the project Panorama Tbilisi, which involves constructing a new cable car and several buildings in the old […]

Georgian priest among dead in Norman Atlantic fire

By | December 30th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Photo by Italian Navy.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian priest is among those who died after the ferry Norman Atlantic caught fire in the Adriatic Sea on Sunday. A spokesperson for Georgia’s Foreign Ministry said a few minutes ago that the body of priest Ilia Kartozia has been found. […]

Nearly a hundred prisoners pardoned in Georgia

By | December 30th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Geguti prison camp. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Nearly a hundred prisoners have been pardoned in Georgia, partly in relation to the New Year celebration. Most of the prisoners who are being freed or have their sentences reduced were pardoned by the president’s pardon commission; one of two […]

Chechen leader proposes building road and railway to Georgia

By | December 29th, 2014|Categories: Caucasus region|Tags: |

Verkhny Lars, the only functioning border crossing between Georgia and Russia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Chechen strongman Ramzan Kadyrov proposes building a new railway as well as a new road connecting the Russian republic with Georgia, which still has tense relations with Russia. Kadyrov’s provocative plan was launched at a press conference in Grozny. […]

Ombudsman asks Prosecutor’s Office to investigate police brutality

By | December 29th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

The incident took place at the police station in Gldani, north Tbilisi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian ombudsman has asked the Prosecutor’s Office to investigate an incident of possible mistreatment by police. On Monday, the Ombudsman’s Office reported that a citizen, whose name is mentioned by initials, was detained […]

Eight Georgians among passangers of ferry that caught fire in Adriatic Sea

By | December 29th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Photo by Italian Navy.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A ferry which caught fire on December 28 in the Adriatic Sea, was carrying eight Georgian citizens. According to Italian media there were 478 people on the ferry, including the crew. At least eight people have been killed in the fire aboard MS Norman Atlantic […]

Georgian president considers meeting Putin

By | December 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president says he is ready to meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin if bilateral relations between the two states will be on the agenda. A meeting between the leaders of the two countries which broke off relations after fighting […]

Five Georgian Defense Ministry officials must remain in detention

By | December 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi city court on Saturday turned down a plea from five Defense Ministry officials who asked to be released on bail. The defense team of the five officials who were detained in late October and charged with embezzlement of about USD 2.3 […]

One more Georgian jihadist dies in Syrian war

By | December 27th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–One more Georgian citizen has died in the Syrian war. Israphil Tsatiashvili, 18, died in Kobani, Syria, fighting for Islamic State. He is the eighth fighter from Pankisi who has died in Syria. Israphil’s brother Zelimkhan, 21, died about a month […]

Brawl in Georgian parliament

By | December 27th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

Fighting broke out in parliament Friday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliamentarians on Friday got into a physical scuffle hitting microphones at each other because they didn’t agree on how to distribute delegates to the parliamentary assembly of the Council of Europe. The ruling coalition proposed reshuffling […]

Armenians in Akhalkalaki struggle to learn Georgian

By | December 26th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Armenians from Samtskhe-Javakheti have a dilemma: They feel isolated from Georgian society because they don’t speak the state language, but at the same time they don’t have enough motivation to learn it. Shushana Shirinian, a journalist from […]

Georgia to reorganize Interior Ministry, Prosecutor’s Office

By | December 26th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

The Ministry of Internal Affairs will be reorganized. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia plans to reorganize the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Prosecutor’s Office. Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said at a press conference Friday that the Interior Ministry will be completely transformed and made […]

Georgian parliament halts work in prehistoric mine, orders investigation

By | December 26th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament on Wednesday decided to halt work at a prehistoric mine that was almost destroyed by a mining company, and to put together a commission to investigate the legality of the ongoing work. The cave complex in Sakdrisi has more […]

Famous Georgians plea for detained officers’ release

By | December 25th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Tbilisi, DFWatch – 37 famous Georgians, including members of the ruling coalition, stand in bail for release of the five defense ministry officials, detained earlier on corruption charges; 20 of them vouch for their innocence. Along with several popular personalities such […]

Government members attend Catholic Midnight Mass in Tbilisi

By | December 25th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

Midnight Mass at The Assumption of the Virgin Mary Church in Tbilisi. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Several government members attended Midnight Mass at the Assumption of the Virgin Mary Church in Tbilisi last night. The ceremony started at 23:30 and Giuseppe Pasotto, Apostolic Administrator of the Caucasus, conducted the prayer. […]

Georgia doubles state funding of four religious communities

By | December 24th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , |

Friday prayer at Orta Jame mosque in Batumi. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian government is doubling the funding of four religious denominations operating in the country, apart of the Georgian Patriarchate, the head of the State Agency for Religious Issues said on Wednesday. The four denominations […]

One Georgian released by South Ossetia

By | December 24th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Sign warning about the de facto border. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–South Ossetia on Tuesday released one of two Georgians who were detained for crossing the disputed border. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Vasil Khidasheli and Alexandre Shiukashvili were detained on December 20 […]

Tbilisi “invaded” by workers from Russian mining company

By | December 24th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: , |

(Info9.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi was Tuesday “invaded” by workers from a Russian mining company who are angry over the suggestion that they should halt work to protect a 5,400 years old archaeological site. The workers from Sakdrisi in southern Georgia gathered […]

Businessman beaten in Tbilisi, claims political motive

By | December 23rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Mikheil Khubutia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian businessman was beaten at Tbilisi restaurant on Saturday and claims it was because of his support for Russian President Vladimir Putin. Mikheil Khubutia, who is a member of Putin’s United Russia Party and has business […]

Many journalists leave Georgian TV channel, claim interference

By | December 23rd, 2014|Categories: Media|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Many employees left their jobs at a Georgian TV station on Monday, as a protest against what they say is interference with the independence of their news reporting. Nino Zhizhilashvili was fired from her position as head of Maestro’s news […]

Prison conditions in Geguti criticized by ombudsman

By | December 22nd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian ombudsman has raised the alarm about bad conditions at Geguti Prison in western Georgia. According to a new report, the safety regulations in place are not sufficient to prevent violence between the prisoners, and there is no program […]

Eco refugees demonstrated in Batumi

By | December 22nd, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Refugees living on an abandoned military base near Batumi broke into the yeard of the Adjara Supreme Council on Monday, demanding to meet with its head. Protesters blocked the road of Chakvi Batumi for ten minutes as sign of protest because […]

Youth activists rally outside PM’s residence

By | December 22nd, 2014|Categories: Youth|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Youth activists continued to protest against the destruction of an ancient mine in the south of Georgia on Sunday and gathered outside the house of Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili. The reason was a comment by Garibashvili in a speech […]

Two Georgian films nominated for Oscar

By | December 21st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Two Georgian films, Corn Island and Tangerines, the latter of which represents Estonia, are among the nominees for an Oscar in the category foreign language film. Tangerines is also nominated for a Golden Globe in the best foreign film category. […]

New EUMM head appointed

By | December 21st, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

EUMM in action. (Official photo.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The EU Monitoring Mission to Georgia (EUMM), which was recently prolonged for two more years, has a new head. Kęstutis Jankauskas replaces Toivo Klaar, who was appointed in October 2013. According to an announcement sent out by EUMM, […]

Brain behind Georgian charity success shares his secrets

By | December 19th, 2014|Categories: Youth|Tags: , |

Boris Kiknadze. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–According to the official data, one out of three young Georgians (20-29 years old) is unemployed.  But a senior student at the University of Georgia Boris Kiknadze is not one of them. Less than one year ago he established a crowd-funded […]

Groups want independent inquest into destruction of ancient gold mine

By | December 19th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Non-governmental organizations in Georgia demand an inquest into how an important archaeological site was almost completely destroyed by a mining company a few days ago. The 5,400 years old gold mine in Sakdrisi […]

44 mosques in Georgia taken over by the state

By | December 19th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

A mosque in Chela, Georgia. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–44 mosques were taken over by Georgia’s Muslim Department two days ago by decision of the State Commission on Religious Issues. According to Zaza Vashakmadze, who is head of the commission, 21 mosques are in the Kakheti region, while 32 […]

EU parliament ratifies association agreement with Georgia

By | December 19th, 2014|Categories: Europe|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–With 490 votes against 76 and 57 absentees European Parliament Thursday approved EU-Georgia’s Association Agreement and adopted a resolution about Georgia with 491 votes against 84 and 63 absentees. The current Georgian president and his […]

Georgian parliamentarian visiting China to attract new investors

By | December 18th, 2014|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

Davit Saganelidze visiting the president of CNEC in Beijing in April 2014. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Head of the parliamentary majority in Georgia is on a visit to China to attract more investments to his country. China is one Georgia’s top five trade partners. The trade between Georgia and China was USD 564 million in all of 2013, while […]

Georgia to reform the Prosecutor’s Office

By | December 18th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s PM wants to start consultations about institutional reform of the Prosecutor’s Office which has long been criticized for political bias. Apart from the Prosecutor’s Office itself, the consultations will include law enforcement bodies, […]

Georgian politician confirmed as Ukraine’s new deputy interior minister

By | December 18th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Eka Zghuladze, Ukraine’s new deputy interior minister. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian politician was on December 17 officially appointed as deputy interior minister in Ukraine, the same post she held under President Mikheil Saakashvili in her home country a few years ago. Eka Zghuiladze is now first deputy to Interior […]

EU parliament to pass resolution on Georgia and ratify agreement

By | December 18th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The EU Parliament is voting today over whether to ratify an treaty with Georgia signed in June and already partly in force. The so-called association agreement offers free trade to EU’s vast market in return for incorporating hundreds of EU regulations […]

Head of Tbilisi NGO detained for illegal possession of firearm

By | December 18th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Kldiashvili. TBILISI, DFWatch–The director of an influential Tbilisi-based non-governmental organization says he was detained for illegal possession of a firearm on December 12. Giorgi Kldiashvili, head of the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI), on Tuesday […]

EU’s observer mission to Georgia extended for two years

By | December 17th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–EU’s military observers in Georgia have had their mandate extended for another two years, until December 2016. EU Monitoring Mission to Georgia (EUMM) was established shortly after the Russia-Georgia war in 2008 to support stabilization […]

Outrage in Tbilisi over destruction of 5,400 year old gold mine

By | December 17th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The news that a prehistoric mine has been damaged by a mining company sparked outrage in Tbilisi Tuesday. People gathered in the evening outside the National Agency on Cultural Heritage Protection to demand the Georgian culture […]

Governing coalition may dismiss Free Democrats committee head

By | December 17th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Parliamentary leader of the Georgian Dream coalition, Giorgi Volski. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The governing coalition is discussing whether to dismiss the head of parliament’s finance and budget committee, because he is a member of a party that left the coalition. The parliamentary majority believes it would be a mistake to have a representative […]

Georgia’s growth in export grinds to a halt

By | December 16th, 2014|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia looked set to continue growing its export this year, but a 35% drop in November has brought the export down to same level as 2013, according to new preliminary data from  the National Statistics Department. Georgia’s export in the month […]

Ombudsman to study progress of Mokhe commission

By | December 16th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: |

Fourteen people were detained earlier this year during clashes in Mokhe. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Public Defender is considering checking the progress of a new commission tasked with studying a conflict around a mosque in Mokhe, a village in southern Georgia. Public Defender Ucha Nanuashvili says he thinks people’s trust […]

Georgian president rides horse during Turkmenistan visit

By | December 16th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili visited Turkmenistan on Monday and signed four agreements dealing with as diverse issues as economy, culture, trade and tourism. People travelling with him say the business leaders in Turkmenistan […]

Guard accused in Zhvania case released on bail

By | December 15th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Mikheil Dzadzamia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former head of shift of Zurab Zhvania’s security detail, who was detained in the new investigation into the prime minister’s death in 2005, was Sunday released from preliminary detention on a 2,000 lari bail (nearly USD 1,090). Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania […]

One more Georgian ex-official proposed for post in Ukraine

By | December 15th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

If appointed, Eka Zghuladze will work on reforming the Ukrainian police. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One more former official from Mikheil Saakashvili’s government has been granted Ukrainian citizenship after being proposed for a high post in the new Ukrainian government. Eka Zghuladze, a former deputy interior minister in Georgia, is now candidate […]

Georgian patriarch deplores destruction of ancient mine

By | December 15th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: , |

Sakdrisi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The influential Georgian patriarch on Sunday criticized a company which is excavating an ancient mine in the southern part of the country, and called on the government to intervene. Mining company RMG Gold on Saturday resumed work at Sakdrisi, […]

Controversial bilingual education program to be changed

By | December 14th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , |

(Photo by Ministry of Education and Science.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The current bilingual education program does not serve its purpose, according to Armenians in the Samtskhe-Javakheti region of Georgia. A specialist from the Ministry of Education and Science agrees with the critique and says that the current program […]

Mining work resumed at prehistoric Sakdrisi site

By | December 13th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Mining work resumed at Sakdrisi on Saturday, a site where scientists and environmentalist groups say is an ancient gold mine with invaluable artifacts from prehistoric man. The controversy about the mine near Bolnisi in the southern part of Georgia has involved […]

One more Defense Ministry official detained for corruption

By | December 13th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Finance Ministry’s investigative service detained one more Defense Ministry official on Saturday. Bakhva Surmanidze was detained for accepting a 400 lari (USD 218) bribe. He is head of the purchasing department at the Giorgi Abramashvili […]

Oleg Melnikov released

By | December 12th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Oleg Melnikov. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former officer in Georgia’s domestic intelligence who was involved in the 2006 murder of Sandro Girgvliani has beenreleased from prison. Oleg Melnikov, formerly an officer of the Constitutional Security Department or ‘Kudi’, was released […]

Film by Georgian director nominated for Golden Globe

By | December 12th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A film by a Georgian filmmaker has been nominated for a Golden Globe award. Tangerines, or Mandariinid, is a Georgian-Estonian production written and directed by the Georgian Zaza Urushadze. Producer of the film is Ivo Felt and it starrs Georgian […]

South Ossetia preparing to sign treaty with Russia

By | December 11th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–South Ossetia may open its border with Russia and even seek some form of closer association, the breakaway region’s leader says. de facto president Leonid Tibilov said Wednesday that a ‘treaty of collaboration’ with Russia is likely to be signed […]

Rallies in Tbilisi and Batumi in support of jailed Azerbaijani journalist

By | December 11th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two demonstrations were held in Georgia Wednesday in support of the Azerbaijani journalist Khadija Ismayilova, who was recently detained. Ismayilova was placed in preliminary detention in Baku on December 5, after being subject to a travel ban earlier […]

Georgian government considers reforming the domestic intelligence

By | December 11th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

The Moduli building, where many ‘Kudi’ interrogations took place. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia is beginning a debate about restructuring the Ministry of Internal Affairs and make the domestic intelligence a separate service. Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said this after a government session on Wednesday. Currently, […]

Georgian lari and Armenian dram recover after slump

By | December 10th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The currencies of Georgia and Armenia are recovering after a slump of more than 10% in the last few weeks. The sight of money exchanges trading US dollars for more than two Georgian lari (GEL) set off a fervent debate in Tbilisi. Many blamed […]

Four dead from Abkhazia war buried in Tbilisi

By | December 10th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A public funeral was held Tuesday for four victims of a plane crash during the Abkhazia war more than twenty years ago. The four were on a plane that was about to land in Sukhumi September 22, 1993, to evacuate head of state Eduard Shevardnadze. […]

Georgia prepares tougher punishment for joining terrorist groups

By | December 10th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia is working on a new bill that will punish people for joining terrorist organizations abroad. Spokesperson for the Interior Ministry tells DF Watch that the details of the new bill will be known after a draft has been sent […]

Woman shot and run over with car by husband in Georgia

By | December 10th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A 41-year old woman was killed by her husband in Kakheti on Sunday. According to local media, a 41 year old man first shot his wife and later ran her over with his car. She died instantly. Police detained the suspect at the crime scene. He is charged […]

Georgia’s labor code still favors employers

By | December 9th, 2014|Categories: Opinion|Tags: , |

Sarah Delys is a criminologist working for Human Rights Education and Monitoring Centre in Tbilisi. Last week hundreds of train workers went on strike after negotiations to improve working conditions and raise salaries failed. The strikers demand overtime compensation, new salary rules and a 13th month salary payment [1]. Leaders of the trade union say the railway […]

Large amount of undeclared gold seized by Georgian customs

By | December 9th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Large quantities of undeclared gold has been seized by Georgian customs at the Sarpi border crossing with Turkey. The gold jewelry which had a total weight of 466.05 grams was found in the belongings of a Georgian citizen who was coming […]

Georgia sends more soldiers to Central African Republic

By | December 9th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Defense Ministry.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Margvelashvili has asked parliament for approval to again send soldiers to the Central African Republic, after the EU extended its mission there for another four months. The president’s order was signed on December 2, and has been received […]

Saakashvili claims Georgian officers preparing to join Ukraine’s military

By | December 9th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Defense Minister Mindia Janelidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former President Mikheil Saakashvili yesterday said that Georgian officers will be serving in Ukraine’s armed forces and have been promised Ukrainian citizenship. But Defense Minister Mindia Janelidze rejects this. He says there hasn’t been a single […]

Georgia plans new measures as one more fighter dies in Syria war

By | December 8th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

A mosque in Pankisi Gorge, Georgia. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One more Georgian citizen from the Pankisi gorge has died during clashes in the city of Kobane, Syria, fighting for Islamic State. This is the eighth Pankisi man to die in the Syrian war. The victim’s family is avoiding comments, but relatives […]

Man injured in Batumi fire dies

By | December 8th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A man who was injured in a fire at a market in Batumi died in hospital Sunday night. Police have detained one person in connection with the fire. Davit Putkaradze, 51, was owner of one of the shops at the market. According to local media, he had lung […]

Journalist detained at Russian singer Grigory Leps’s Tbilisi concert

By | December 8th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Journalist Nini Metreveli and her cameraman were detained by private security at Sports Palace. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A journalist was detained by organizers of a concert by the Russian singer Grigory Leps on Sunday. The incident led to a protest rally. Maestro TV journalist Nini Metreveli and her cameraman were locked up in a room with a guard for asking […]

Two die in fire in Batumi

By | December 8th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two people died in a fire at a market in Batumi on Sunday. One person is in hospital in a critical condition. The victims are a married couple in their fifties, Temur and Nani Rizhvadze, while the third injured person is Davit Putkaradze, 51. […]

Four victims of Abkhazia war identified

By | December 7th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Babushara airport, Abkhazia. TBILISI, DFWatch–Four bodies found in a cemetery in Abkhazia have been identified. The bodies belong to the same family and the four died in a plane crash during the war in 1992-1993. According to Refugee Minister Sozar Subari, the victims are twins Nukri […]

Relative of PM leaves his position

By | December 6th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Irakli Garibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A relative of the prime minister left his position as executive secretary of the Georgian Dream party, the largest member of the ruling coalition. According to a statement issued by GD on Friday, Zviad Jankarashvili left his seat by his own volition. […]

Respect will not save women from violence

By | December 5th, 2014|Categories: Opinion|Tags: |

Arguably the most influential person in Georgia, the Patriarch Ilia II, does not agree that a woman should be equal to a man in  a family. Instead “she must be respected by her husband. She [a wife] has been always holding high authority in Georgia, and so it shall […]

Foreign students facing bureaucracy and complex visa procedures

By | December 5th, 2014|Categories: Youth|Tags: , , |

Regina Jegorova-Askerova. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–How attractive is Georgia as a country for young students looking for a career path? At the moment, there are 19 public and 47 private higher education institutions in Georgia. According to the National Statistics Office, there were 2,297 foreign students […]

Ivanishvili’s new barrage against Alasania: ‘You are a weak manager’

By | December 5th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili at the National Library on Thursday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–On Thursday, Georgia’s richest person and godfather of the governing coalition again lashed out at Irakli Alasania, calling him ‘a weak manager’ who has made an ‘ignorant statement’. Alasania was recently dismissed and claims it was […]

Mystery: Why is the water level so low in Mtkvari (Kura)?

By | December 5th, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

The river Mtkvari (Kura). (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Water levels have fallen drastically the last few days in the biggest river in the South Caucasus, causing massive fish die-off. The Mtkvari originates in Turkey, runs eastward across Georgia and Azerbaijan, emptying into the Caspian Sea. […]

Envoy says prosecuting ex-officials slows down NATO integration

By | December 4th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

James Appathurai. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A visiting NATO envoy warns Georgia that if the prosecution of former officials is seen as being politically motivated, this will slow down the country’s integration with the alliance. James Appathurai said it is important not only to avoid […]

Georgia may replace ambassador to Ukraine

By | December 4th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

“The fact is that we faced certain problems regarding Ukraine,” majority leader Davit Saganelidze says. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia may replace its ambassador to Ukraine after a Saakashvili era official was appointed as Ukrainian health minister. Wednesday there were reports that the government plans to replace its ambassador to Ukraine with Zviad Jankarashvili, […]

Georgia ranked 50th on corruption index

By | December 3rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

The Corruption Perception Index is published annually by Transparency International. TBILISI, DFWatch–Transparency International (TI) ranked Georgia 50th among 175 countries in its annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) report. Georgia got 52 points out of the maximum 100. In the past, it scored 52 in 2012 (51st place) and 49 in 2013 (55th place). […]

Ukraine appointment of Georgian ex-official angers Tbilisi

By | December 3rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Aleksandre Kvitashvili, Ukraine’s new health minister, had the same position in Georgia during Saakashvili. (Photo by Tbilisi State University.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi takes it as a slap in the face that Ukraine has appointed a former member of government from Georgia as health minister. On Tuesday, the Ukrainian parliament, Verkhovna Rada, agreed to appoint Alxandre Kvitashvili, a former Georgian health minister, […]

Tbilisi NGOs vow to defend president’s veto

By | December 3rd, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A group of NGOs based in Tbilisi warn that they are going on the offensive against the country’s parliament, which recently overturned a veto by President Margvelashvili against giving the Interior Ministry control over the means to conduct secret surveillance. […]

New report sheds light on border shooting in 2012

By | December 2nd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Ombudsman Ucha Nanuashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The ombudsman in Georgia on Monday published a report which criticizes the authorities for holding back information and not properly investigating a border shooting in 2012. When the several days long standoff ended on the border with Russia in late […]

Parliament overturns president’s veto, approves surveillance bill

By | December 1st, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

The Ministry of Internal Affairs. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament on Sunday overturned the president’s veto and approved the a surveillance bill which gives the Interior Ministry direct access to communication operators’ networks and to eavesdrop on citizens. 82 MPs voted in favor […]

Georgian parliament rejects sanctions against Russia

By | December 1st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A proposal in the Georgian parliament to introduce sanctions against Russia has failed to achieve enough votes. Only 36 MPs backed the proposal on Thursday, which was put forth by deputies from the National Movement, the party of former […]

Launch of Ivanishvili’s new talk show postponed till February

By | November 30th, 2014|Categories: Media|Tags: , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (1TV.ge) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili’s talk show will not go on air until February at the earliest. the businessman who dedicated himself to strengthening civil society after retiring from politics announced his plans for a talk show […]

Georgia to regulate quality of traditional yogurt

By | November 30th, 2014|Categories: Economy|Tags: , |

A study earlier in 2014 found that many milk products contain vegetable fat. Now the contents of matsoni will be regulated by law. (for.ge) TBILISI, DFWatch–A new law will regulate the quality of the Georgian milk product matsoni, a kind of a fermented milk similar to yogurt. The purpose is to protect matsoni as cultural heritage and ensure the best quality of the traditional product. In a new draft […]

Georgian president vetoes surveillance bill, again

By | November 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president has vetoed a surveillance bill which would have given the Interior Ministry control over access keys to eavesdropping on the communication of citizens. President Giorgi Margvelashvili’s veto on Saturday is the second time […]

Georgia’s surveillance bill passed, now up to president

By | November 28th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament on Friday finally passed a law about secret surveillance that grants the Interior Ministry direct access to secret surveillance material with 73 votes in favor and 30 against. The ‘keys issue’, as it has come to be known […]

Georgian parliament lets Interior Ministry have access to surveillance

By | November 28th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s national assembly on Thursday decided to leave access keys to secretly obtained surveillance material in the hands of the Interior Ministry. After days of confrontation with a diversity of opinions about the draft bill, 75 MPs voted […]

Saakashvili claims Georgian govt blocked Ukraine appointment

By | November 28th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Nika Gilauri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s former President Mikheil Saakashvili says the new government has blocked the appointment of one of his former associates as business ombudsman in Ukraine. However, statements made by Nika Gilauri in early November contradict what […]

Georgian talk show host makes fun of Jehovah’s Witnesses

By | November 27th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

Nanuka Zhorzholiani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A well-known TV host in the republic of Georgia was Wednesday evening criticized for making discriminating statements about Jehovah’s Witnesses while on air. One of the guests on Nanuka’s Show, which is aired on Rustavi 2, a TV channel in the former […]

Saakashvili charged in case he considered ‘black stain’ on his reputation

By | November 27th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Mikheil Saakashvili considered the Girgvliani case a ‘black stain’ on the history of his time in power. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–New charges were brought against former Georgian President Mikheil Saakasvhili on Thursday, related to the murder of a bank employee in 2006. The investigation into the Sandro Girgvilani murder, which Saakashvili has called the ‘a black stain’ […]

Hungary ratifies Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova’s EU treaties

By | November 27th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , |

(parliament.hu) TBILISI, DFWatch–The parliament in Hungary on Tuesday ratified agreements signed with the EU by Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The press service of Georgia’s Foreign Ministry erroneously said that 127 deputies voted for ratification. But in fact, 122 MPs supported […]

Georgian rail workers go on strike

By | November 26th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Georgian rail workers are on strike. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Employees of the Georgian railway went on strike this week demanding overtime compensation, new salary rules and a so-called 13th salary payment. A new trade union for railway workers has been set up, headed by Vitaly Giorgadze and deputy […]

Campaign launched in Georgia against domestic violence

By | November 26th, 2014|Categories: Society|Tags: |

“The state has a duty to protect women against violence.” (DF Watch photo.) TBILISI, DFWatch–There were demonstrations in 22 cities and towns all over Georgia on Tuesday to highlight the problem of violence against women. 24 women have been killed this year in Georgia, and there are many reports of family conflicts, when women […]

Tbilisi considers Russia’s new Abkhazia treaty a form of annexation

By | November 26th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili said the new treaty makes Abkhazia a part of Russia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The signing of a new treaty between Abkhazia and Russia has caused outrage in Tbilisi. Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said he considers what has happened annexation. Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili went as far as saying that […]

New figures confirm upward trend of Georgia’s foreign trade

By | November 25th, 2014|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

Trucks at the border with Turkey at Sarpi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in the first ten months of 2014 was USD 9.4 billion; 10 percent more than the same period in 2013. According to the latest monthly report by Georgia’s National Statistics Department, published on Monday, export […]

Pankisi’s Council of Elders and what they do

By | November 25th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , , , , |

Khaso Khangoshvili, Zaur Gumashvili, Apolon Gaurgashvili and Soltsa Kavtarashvili. (DF Watch.) DUISI, DFWatch–Despite its reputation, Georgia’s Pankisi Gorge is now a quite peaceful place, according to the Council of Elders, an informal body which arbitrates conflicts in the area. The council has a long history here. Its role is to mediate and decide […]

Georgian parliament makes new attempt to agree on surveillance reform

By | November 24th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia has still not decided who should have access to secret surveillance material, a problem that has remained unresolved for more than half a year. But this week, parliament is to review several legislative proposals. A previous vote that […]

Georgia goes dark after accident at thermal power plant

By | November 24th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–An accident at a thermal power plant in eastern Georgia caused a country-wide blackout early Monday morning. Almost the entire country was without electricity at 02:10 in the middle of the night, as the thermal power plant in Gardabani near […]

Georgian president pardons 121 prisoners

By | November 24th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili pardoned 121 prisoners in connection with the celebration of Giorgoba, an important Christian holiday in Georgia. 93 of those who were pardoned left prison the same day Friday, while 28 prisoners had their […]

Activists throw eggs and tomatoes at UNM office on anniversary

By | November 24th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two people were detained during a demonstration against the National Movement in Tbilisi on Sunday. The demonstration took place outside the party’s office and was held in connection with the 11 years anniversary of the Rose Revolution, which […]

Kakha Bendukidze buried in Tbilisi on Saturday

By | November 23rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s former economy minister, the businessman Kakha Bendukidze was buried in Tbilisi on Saturday. Bendukidze died in London recently. A public funeral service was held earlier on Saturday at one of the universities which he founded. […]

Prosecutor’s Office investigating possible prisoner mistreatment

By | November 23rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office is investigating a possible mistreatment case at Gldani prison (“No 8”) in Tbilisi. The investigation will involve questioning prison staff and prisoners and conducting a forensic examination of bodily injuries which were recently […]

Georgian opera singer postpones gay rights charity concert

By | November 22nd, 2014|Categories: Minorities, News|Tags: , |

Tamar Iveri’s promised charity concert for gays, lesbians and other sexual minorities is postponed. TBILISI, DFWatch–Fans of Tamar Iveri will have to wait another two months to see her singing in a charity concert in Tbilisi. A few Georgian media outlets announced that she just gave birth to twins, thus the planned concert was moved to December 10. Also the head […]

Caucasus is caught between two ambitious powers

By | November 21st, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Ronald Suny is Professor of Social and Political History at Michigan State University. Ukraine and the Caucasus countries are caught between two ambitious powers: Russia, which wants to have hegemony in the former Soviet space, and the United States, which wants global hegemony, according to Ronald G. Suny, professor of political science and history […]

Demonstrations in support of Kodori rebel leader

By | November 21st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Emzar Kvitsiani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Supreme Court says it has become the target of harassment by certain politicians, particularly following the recent conviction of man for leading the 2006 Kodori mutiny. Emzar Kvitsiani, who in 2006 declared disobedience toward […]

Pankisi youth choose radical Islam over grim reality

By | November 21st, 2014|Categories: Minorities, Youth|Tags: , , |

(DF Watch.) DUISI, DFWatch–The people in Pankisi Gorge have been under increasing scrutiny for the last few months, as fighters from this region have become high-ranking commanders in the forces of the Islamic State. Pankisi is merely a 34 square kilometers cut into the Greater […]

Killed transgender woman remembered with a minute’s silence in Tbilisi

By | November 21st, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

A transgender woman recently killed in Tbilisi was remembered with a minute’s silence. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–LGBT activists on Thursday marked Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR) in Tbilisi. The demonstration took place at the House of Justice to protest against the fact that transgender people aren’t allowed to register their true gender in ID cards. […]

Who is building most roads is the new debate in Georgia

By | November 21st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Road construction has become the new subject of dispute between the former and current government in Georgia. What sparked the debate was when the prime minister opened a new section of highway in western Georgia by scathingly saying that the […]

Bendukidze brought home to Georgia Thursday

By | November 20th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The body of the former Economy Minister Kakha Bendukidze, who recently died of heart failure according to preliminary information, will be brought home to Georgia on Thursday. The body will be on a direct flight from London and brought to his […]

Ombudsman asks to investigate possible beating in Gldani prison

By | November 20th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s ombudsman claims they have reason to believe prisoners were tortured last week at a prison in Gldani, Tbilisi; the very same prison where humiliating abuse of prisoners was filmed and shown on TV two years ago. The public defender […]

Georgia’s dismissed defense minister gives ‘final warning’

By | November 19th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Irakli Alasania. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s dismissed defense minister has given a ‘final warning’ to the country’s prosecutors, after which he plans to get the international community involved in the process. Irakli Alasania was dismissed shortly after making strong statements […]

Parliament fails to reach agreement on hat-removal during anthem

By | November 19th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliamentarians in Georgia failed to reach agreement Tuesday about whether men should be legally obligated to take off their hats when the national anthem is played in the assembly. Giorgi Kakhiani has authored a draft bill that will remove […]

Court releases pathologist on trial in connection with PM’s death

By | November 19th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Levan Chachua. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The pathologist on trial in the case about the death of Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania in 2005 has been given bail. Levan Chachua has been in detention since March 20, but on Tuesday the court ruled that he may be released against paying a 10,000 […]

50th meeting of the post-2008 incident prevention talks

By | November 18th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Practical problems for people affected by the conflict is the main focus of the IPRM meetings. (EUMM.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Monday another meeting was held of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) between the conflicting parties of the 2008 war. This was the 50th such meeting, and as usual it took place at Ergneti, a village close to the de facto border. […]

Georgian PM claims Russia plans annexation of territories

By | November 18th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian prime minister claims Russia is preparing to annex two Georgian breakaway regions. Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said this while meeting NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday. One of the topics discussed was the […]

Georgia’s Prosecutor’s Office checking the finances of several ministries

By | November 18th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Lasha Tordia, head of the State Audit Office. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office in Georgia has begun examining the finances of the biggest government ministries. This follows findings by the Audit Office of violations in several ministries expenditures. Head of the Audit Office, Lasha Tordia, said […]

Leader of 2006 Kodori mutiny gets 12 years in jail

By | November 17th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Emzar Kvitsiani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The leader of the Kodori Gorge mutiny in 2006 was Monday sentenced to 12 years in jail. Emzar Kvitsiani was convicted of mutiny and forming an illegal paramilitary group. His lawyer said they will appeal the verdict to the Appeals […]

Georgia’s wine production grew 13% in 2013

By | November 17th, 2014|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

71% of the wine was produced by households in 2013. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia produced 12.6 percent more wine in 2013 than in 2012, according to the government’s international monitoring center. 71.2 percent of the 183,381 tons of wine produced in 2013 came from households, and 28.8 percent from companies. In 2012, […]

Georgian PM appoints new minister for integration with Europe

By | November 16th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Davit Bakradze is Georgia’s new Euro-integration minister. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian prime minister on Saturday approved a new minister of Euro and Euro Atlantic integration. The new Euro-integration minister Davit Bakradze replaces Alexi Petriashvili, who resigned in protest against the dismissal […]

Saakashvili appears via video link at anti-Russia rally in Tbilisi

By | November 16th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili addressed a crowd in Tbilisi Saturday, via video link. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s former ruling party mobilized several thousand people on Saturday for an anti-Russia themed rally and blamed the government for inaction in the face of what it claimed is impending Russian annexation of two breakaway regions. […]

Three Georgian soldiers injured in suicide attack in Afghanistan

By | November 15th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Photo: Ministry of Defense.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Three Georgian soldiers were injured at a military base in Bagram, Afghanistan, as a suicide bomber blew himself up while the Georgians were patrolling the area. The Ministry of Defense said the health of soldiers is in no danger. They were taken […]

National Movement preparing ‘large-scale’ demonstration in Tbilisi

By | November 15th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Rustaveli Avenue was blocked for traffic from 12 today, in preparation for the rally. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former government representatives from the years following the rose revolution in 2003 are holding a rally in central Tbilisi today to protest against Russia’s annexation of two breakaway regions. National Movement members claim this is […]

Georgia’s problem lack of trust in institutions, president says

By | November 14th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili said in an address to parliament on Friday that he has warned that there would be problems if people continued to distrust the country’s institutions. “During the recent year, I have repeatedly underlined […]

Martyrs remembered in Tbilisi

By | November 14th, 2014|Categories: Society|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Orthodox Church on Thursday remembered the 100,000 martyrs by walking through the streets of Tbilisi for hours and conducting a prayer on Metekhi Bridge. The church marks this day the same way every year. According to historical sources, […]

Rose revolution ideologue dies of heart failure in London

By | November 14th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Friends wrote on Facebook that Kakha Bendukidze died in a hotel room in London. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian economy minister Kakha Bendukidze died Thursday in London, aged 58. Bendukidze was an important strategist for the economic liberalization which started during President Saakashvili from 2004. Friends and acquaintances wrote […]

New investigation against Georgia’s Ministry of Defense

By | November 14th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office in Georgia has opened another investigation against the Defense Ministry, which is already subject to two investigations which prompted the minister’s dismissal last week. This time the investigation is based on material […]

Court sets no bail conditions for six on trial for food poisoning

By | November 13th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi City Court did not set bail conditions for six Defense Ministry officials who are on trial for being involved in a food poisoning case in 2013. According to the Prosecutor’s Office, ten cases of poisoning of military employees took place. The six officials […]

Expert in PM Zhvania’s autopsy found dead

By | November 13th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Tbilisi City Court. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One of the experts who was involved in the autopsy following the death of Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania in 2005 was found dead in his apartment on Thursday. Meanwhile, Tbilisi City Court finished the hearing for another expert and listened […]

National Movement offensive against govt’s ‘loyal attitude to Russia’

By | November 13th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–National Movement delegates left the suit and tie at home Wednesday and instead showed up in parliament wearing white t-shirts with the slogan ‘no to annexation’ to protest the government’s ‘loyal attitude to Russia’. The party has accused the new […]

Ex-official makes plea agreement to testify against Saakashvili ally

By | November 13th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Oleg Melnikov. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former officer in Georgia’s Interior Minister has made another plea agreement in return for testifying against one of the allies of Mikheil Saakashvili. Oleg Melnikov used to be an officer in the previous government’s possibly most […]

Ashamed of being straight

By | November 13th, 2014|Categories: Opinion|Tags: |

A trans gender woman was killed in Tbilisi Tuesday. (Interpressnews.) I am lucky to be born straight. I am lucky to be one of those people who are not stigmatized on the basis of their sexual affection to a certain human being; who can kiss and hold hands in public without being attacked or bullied for it; who can get officially married […]

Suspect detained in murder of trans woman

By | November 12th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Police in Georgia Wednesday detained a suspect in the murder of a transgender woman in Tbilisi the day before. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the 26 year old, who lives in Tbilisi, killed the transgender woman because […]

Students demand decision about Kobuleti madrasa

By | November 12th, 2014|Categories: Minorities, Youth|Tags: |

The house in Kobuleti where a Muslim boarding school is planned. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Students at a Muslim school demonstrated outside the government house in Batumi a few days ago, demanding that the the Kobuleti Boarding School issue be solved soon. Also university students joined the rally. They claim that the local government […]

Face slapping in Tbilisi City Council over dog shelter

By | November 12th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Elizbarashvili Dog Shelter in Tbilisi holds more than four hundred dogs. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Fighting broke out Tuesday at Tbilisi City Council over a proposal to shut down a large private dog shelter in the capital. Neighbors of the shelter showed up at the council session to demand that it be shut down because they consider it a nuisance. […]

Georgia’s new foreign minister is an experienced insider

By | November 12th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

New Foreign Minister Tamar Beruchashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili on Tuesday appointed Tamar Beruchashvili as new foreign minister. Beruchashvili was a deputy to Foreign Minister Maya Panjikidze, who resigned in protest against the dismissal of Defense Minister Irakli Alasania […]

Transwoman killed and flat set on fire in Tbilisi

By | November 11th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A young transgender person was killed in her apartment last night on Pekini street, Tbilisi. The victim’s apartment was set on fire, apparently in order to destroy the evidence. Local media report that the victim was a 23 year old transwoman, who has appeared […]

Pankisi women challenge traditional law

By | November 11th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

Duisi. (DF Watch.) DUISI. DFWatch–Centuries-old mountain traditions and customs still regulate daily life in Pankisi, a valley in the northeast of Georgia populated by Kists and Chechens. Now the old ways are challenged by a new women’s council. Traditionally, the highest decision […]

Students demonstrated against ‘nepotism’ at Tbilisi State University

By | November 11th, 2014|Categories: Youth|Tags: , |

Students say Tbilisi State University is run by clans. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Students at Tbilisi State University on Monday demonstrated against what they say is a clan-run education system which doesn’t encourage scientific activities. The march started from the central branch of the university and ended outside the […]

Ethnic clash in Akhmeta, eastern Georgia

By | November 11th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , , |

Jokola Achishvili. (Photo posted on Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A street fight with ethnic overtones in eastern Georgia on Sunday led to people being hospitalized and several people were detained. The scuffle took place in the town Akhmeta, between local Georgians and Kist, who are a subgroup of Chechens […]

Margvelashvili will address parliament on Friday

By | November 11th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili will address parliament on November 14 at noon. The address will be held at the beginning at a plenary session and be followed by an address of the speaker of parliament. November 5, right after the prime minister […]

New forensic report prompts tougher charges against Saakashvili

By | November 11th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Mikheil Saakashvili is now also charged with organizing deliberate severe damage to someone’s health. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A new forensic report concluding that the victim of a beating in 2005 had life-threatening injuries has led to tougher charges being introduced against Georgia’s former president Mikheil Saakashvili. The Georgian Prosecutor’s Office announced […]

Government bloc in parliament grows to 87

By | November 10th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The governing Georgian Dream coalition on Monday increased the number of seats it controls in parliament to 87, as twelve majoritarians agreed to support the bloc. The same day as the twelve decided to join the majority, the Free Democrats officially […]

Roki tunnel reopened

By | November 10th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Roki tunnel before the repair work. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia has reopened a strategically important tunnel through the Caucasus mountain range after a full-scale overhaul that has taken two and a half years and cost USD 400 million. According to Russian officials, equipment had been moved from the […]

Justice minister leaves Free Democrats Party

By | November 10th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Justice Minister Thea Tsulukiani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Justice Minister Thea Tsulukiani decided to finally leave the Free Democrats, the party led by the dismissed defense minister Irakli Alasania. Tsulukiani recently withdrew from the Georgian Dream coalition due to political crisis following the sacking […]

Ivanishvili’s new talk show will fill information vacuum

By | November 10th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (TV1.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The father of Georgia’s government coalition, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, presented his plans for a new talk show Saturday. Ivanishvili, who was prime minister the first year of the Georgian Dream coalition’s government, will appear on the […]

Georgia’s ex-foreign minister: ‘Let them arrest us’

By | November 10th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Maia Panjikidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s recently resigned foreign minister believes herself and the recently dismissed defense minister might be arrested soon. Defense Minister Irakli Alasania was dismissed last week because he according to the prime minister was trying to turn […]

TI Georgia says Georgia’s new visa rules are harming the economy

By | November 9th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Transparency International said on Friday that Georgia’s new visa rules have created serious problems for investments and tourism. TI Georgia’s new report, which was presented at Holiday Inn Hotel in Tbilisi, contains recommendations which […]

Ivanishvili criticizes dismissed defense minister in lengthy TV interview

By | November 9th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Channel 1.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The billionaire behind the government coalition in Georgia on Saturday made his first public comments about the political crisis. Bidzina Ivanishvili had critical things to say about several of the people who have been at center stage these last days, […]

Ex-defense minister’s party aims for victory in 2016 election

By | November 8th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Irakli Alasania. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s dismissed defense minister, Irakli Alasania, feels optimistic that his party which recently left the governing coalition will win in the parliamentary election of 2016. The Free Democrats on Saturday held a party conference, which with […]

Prisoners’ handicraft exhibition dedicated to violence against women

By | November 8th, 2014|Categories: Society|Tags: , , |

(DF Watch photo.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Handicraft made by prisoners went on sale at an exhibition at Radisson Blu Iveria hotel in Tbilisi on Friday dedicated to the International Day for Elimination of Violence against Women. The works at the exhibition ‘Creation Work for Dignity’ were made by […]

Georgia’s ruling coalition loses one more parliament member

By | November 7th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Shalva Shavgulidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s ruling Georgian Dream coalition received another unexpected blow Friday when one of its active members switched sides and joined the dismissed defense minister’s political party. Nevertheless, GD says the loss of Shalva Shavgulidze […]

Dismissed defense minister met Ivanishvili

By | November 7th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili (left) and Irakli Alasania. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Defense Minister Irakli Alasania, who was dismissed a few days ago, Thursday evening met Bidzina Ivanishvili, the businessman who brought together the Georgian Dream coalition. Ivanishvili has avoided public statements since he left […]

PM: Coalition’s split will strengthen Georgia’s democracy

By | November 7th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–After sacking and reprimanding his once ally, Prime Minister Garibashvili says if Alasania’s party goes into opposition, this will make the country’s democracy even stronger. Alasania on his part says he thinks the PM has lost face. Garibashvili […]

Georgia’s ruling coalition struggling to maintain majority in parliament

By | November 7th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , , |

Davit Saganelidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In Georgia, the party of the recently dismissed defense minister is rushing to try to deprive Georgian Dream of its majority, while the coalition is trying to retain it. If all ten members of the Free Democrats faction leave the coalition, this will […]

Foreign minister’s deputies return to work, after resigning yesterday

By | November 6th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

“The PM instructed me that the system must function,’ said Davit Japahjania, one of the deputies to the foreign minister. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–At least two of the deputies of the Georgian foreign minister will remain on their posts despite saying yesterday that they would resign in the wake of the dismissal of the defense minister. Tamar Beruchashvili and Davit Jalaghania told journalists […]

Georgian PM castigates dismissed defense minister

By | November 6th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , , |

Irakli Garibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili castigated former Defense Minister Irakli Alasania on Thursday, calling him ‘a traitor’ and ‘an opportunist’. “What Alasania did, is a betrayal of the victory of 2012 and an attempt to deceive the Georgian […]

President: Georgia’s European course is unchangeable

By | November 6th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili rules out the possibility of a change in Georgia’s foreign policy orientation. The government coalition is split with both sides accusing the other of endangering the policy of seeking integration with NATO […]

Georgia’s ruling coalition may keep majority in parliament

By | November 6th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–According to the latest available information, the ruling Georgian Dream coalition may keep its majority of seats in the parliament. Three MPs from the ten strong Free Democrats – Georgian Dream faction might choose to side with Georgian […]

One party leaves Georgia’s govt coalition in midst of political crisis

By | November 5th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Irakli Alasania announced Wednesday evening that the Free Democrats Party is leaving the government coalition. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government coalition in Georgia is in its worst crisis till now, as one party leaves and questions are raised about its western oriented course. Two ministers resigned in protest against the dismissal of the defense minister the day before, but the crisis […]

Georgia’s Foreign Affairs Minister resigns, saying European choice under threat

By | November 5th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Members of Alasania’s political team are stepping down one by one as Foreign Affairs Minister Maia Panjikidze and four of her deputies resigned on Wednesday in the wake of the political turmoil that has brought Georgia’s ruling coalition on the verge of collapse. […]

Georgian PM fires defense minister over corruption case

By | November 5th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Irakli Alasania said he believes his dismissal was political. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian PM Irakli Garibashvili dismissed his defense minister Tuesday evening, hours after the Prosecutor’s Office brought charges against six more Defense Ministry officials. The sacked minister, Irakli Alasania, was one of the most […]

Deputy defense minister protests against unfair questioning

By | November 4th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Deputy Defense Minister Aleksandre Batiashvili. (Pirveli.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A deputy defense minister in Georgia protested against ‘a number of violations’ on Monday after spending about ten hours in questioning about a corruption case involving defense officials. Alexi Batiashvili has status as witness in the case […]

Six more defense officials charged in Georgia

By | November 4th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–While Georgia’s western backed defense minister struggles to prove the innocence of his ‘brothers-in-arms’, the Prosecutor’s Office dealt the beleaguered minister another blow. The Prosecutor’s Office on Tuesday brought a new case about food […]

Prosecutors and MoD quarrel: who is keeping corruption case secret?

By | November 4th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Prosecutor’s Office. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–As five defense officials remain in pre-trial detention on corruption charges, the Defense Ministry and Prosecutor’s Office are quarreling over whose fault it is that the case documents remain classified. The five, who were detained October 28, […]

Snow blocks roads in Georgia

By | November 3rd, 2014|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Traffic is currently rerouted from Chakvi-Makhinjauri highway in western Georgia after a landslide on Sunday blocked the road. According to the Regional Development and Infrastructure Ministry, about 20-30 thousand cubic meters of land collapsed […]

Two Chechen travelers deported from Georgia

By | November 3rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Kutaisi airport. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia on Sunday deported two Russian citizens who were planning to go to Chechnya. The two were held at Kutaisi airport and eventually sent to Moscow. The Interior Ministry claims the reason they were deported was that they couldn’t answer […]

60% of Tbilisi City Hall employees fail tests

By | November 2nd, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–290 out of 486 employees of Tbilisi City Hall have failed a test on Saturday. The former ruling party claims it is political, as many of the workers are from the previous government. 563 employees were expected to show up for Saturday’s test. […]

Alasania vouches for the innocence of his ‘brothers-in-arms’

By | November 1st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Irakli Alasania says there are signs of bias against the five detainees.(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The detention of Defense Ministry officials is a severe blow to the country’s security, says Irakli Alasania, head of the MoD, who vouches for his fellow colleagues’ innocence, calling them ‘my brothers-in-arms and team-mates’. Meanwhile a corruption […]

Georgian parliament accepts president’s veto

By | October 31st, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament grudgingly abandoned its plan to overturn the president’s veto against a decision to postpone legislation that would quickly curb the Interior Ministry’s ability to carry out secret surveillance. Georgia has introduced […]

Georgian president vetoes postponement of surveillance reform

By | October 31st, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili Friday vetoed a decision by the Georgian parliament to postpone a decision about reining in the use secret surveillance by the state. The veto is a highly confrontational move that could be a precursor of a major rift […]

Five defense officials placed in pre-trial detention

By | October 31st, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Tbilisi City Court. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi City Court on Thursday placed five Defense Ministry officials in pre-trial detention. The five are charged with embezzling more than four million lari in connection with a tender for building high speed Internet. The hearing was […]

Changes in Georgia’s immigration law expected in December

By | October 31st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Georgia’s new immigration law will be amended. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The criticism of the new immigration law in Georgia seems to have yielded some results: lawmakers are contemplating amendments to existing legislation concerning visa and residency permit. The parliament of Georgia has already received […]

Georgian ombudsman against use of video in children’s psychology sessions

By | October 30th, 2014|Categories: Youth|Tags: , |

Ombudsman Ucha Nanuashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s public defender recommends that the Ministry of Education reconsiders a decision to allow the use of photo and video recordings of children during psychologist consultations. A psychology center for school children was opened in spring […]

NATO chief Stoltenberg to meet Georgian PM November 17

By | October 30th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. (NATO.) TBILISI, DFWatch–New NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg will meet Georgia’s prime minister on November 17. Secretary General Stoltenberg said this in a speech at the German Marshall Fund in Brussels on Wednesday. The stated purpose of the meeting with Georgian PM Irakli […]

Abkhazia rejects offer of status as autonomous region

By | October 30th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The de facto government of Abkhazia considers inadequate a proposal by the Georgian prime minister to make Abkhazia an autonomous republic inside Georgia. Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili made the proposal […]

Parliament speaker says corruption case has harmed Georgia’s defense ability

By | October 30th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , |

Speaker of Parliament Davit Usupashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s parliament speaker says the detention of five defense ministry officials accused of corruption has seriously harmed the country’s defense ability, even if the charges turn out to be false. Speaker of Parliament Davit Usupashvili […]

Saakashvili supporters plan rally on November 15

By | October 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

National Movement spokesperson Irma Nadirashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian prime minister claims the party associated with former President Mikheil Saakashvili is planning to destabilize the country in connection with a demonstration planned on November 15. The National Movement announced the rally a few days […]

Georgian parliament postpones decision on secret surveillance

By | October 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Interior Minister Alexandre Chikaidze destroying the ‘dirty archive’ in February, 2014. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The question of who should hold the access keys to the ‘black boxes’ containing secret surveillance material in Georgia has been postponed six more months. As other former Soviet countries, Georgia has experienced widespread use of phone tapping […]

First lady and ministers perform in ‘Women wounded to death’

By | October 29th, 2014|Categories: Society|Tags: , , , |

The president’s wife Maka Chichua performing Tuesday at Marjanishvili Theater. (Palitra.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s first lady and several government ministers took part in a theater performance on Tuesday dedicated to women who have been victims of violence. The title of the performance, held at Marjanishvili Theater, was ‘Women wounded to death’ […]

Smiling faces, little substance after security council session

By | October 29th, 2014|Categories: Security|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili (left) and Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili shaking hands Tuesday. (Photo published on Facebook by the president’s office.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s president and prime minister laid their differences to rest on Tuesday and put on big smiles for a session of the National Security Council. The session was called by President Giorgi Margvelashvili to come up with ideas for how to respond […]

One man dead in building collapse in Zugdidi

By | October 28th, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One man died as a result of a building collapse in western Georgia Monday night. A water reservior burst in the office of the State Security Agency in the town Zugdidi, near the Abkhazian region. The victim is head of department Zviad Lagvilava. […]

Five Defense Ministry officials detained, accused of embezzlement

By | October 28th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

The Defense Ministry issued a statement after one former and four current officials were detained. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office in Georgia on Tuesday detained five officials at the Defense Ministry and accused them of embezzlement of about USD 2.3 million of the state’s money. The office accuses them of granting advantages to the communication […]

Georgian PM to attend security council meeting

By | October 28th, 2014|Categories: News, Security|Tags: , , |

Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian prime minister unexpectedly announced that he will attend a meeting today of the National Security Council, which was called by the president to respond to a proposed new pact between Russia and breakaway Abkhazia. Despite […]

Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women

By | October 27th, 2014|Categories: Opinion|Tags: , |

Sarah Delys is a criminologist working for Human Rights Education and Monitoring Centre in Tbilisi. Two weeks ago the weekend news was dominated by cases of acts of violence against women. Especially the murder at Ilia State University on October 17 and the subsequent media reports of other cases of domestic violence over the course of two days spurred the debate. […]

Georgia’s security council will meet, though many members absent

By | October 27th, 2014|Categories: News, Security|Tags: |

Irina Imerlishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president has called a meeting of the National Security Council tomorrow to discuss an issue that may influence the country’s territorial integrity, but several central figures in the government are unlikely to show up. President Giorgi […]

Former Georgian economy minister becomes Tymoshenko adviser

By | October 27th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

Yulia Tynoshenko (left) presented Giorgi Arveladze (right) as one of her new advisers on Ukrainian channel Inter TV. TBILISI, DFWatch–Right before Ukrainians went to the polls in Sunday’s parliamentary election, former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko named a former Georgian economy minister as one of her advisers. Tymoshenko is leader of Batkivshchyna (Fatherland), a small […]

Georgia may make ‘civic equality’ part of university entrance exam

By | October 26th, 2014|Categories: News, Youth|Tags: |

Maia Miminoshvili, head of the National Exam Center. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The exam authority in Georgia has suggested introducing a new test in ‘civic equality’ as part of the entrance exams for university studies. The new test has been proposed by the National Exam Center against the background of a recent discussion […]

Georgian bishop says the Mokhe building was never a mosque

By | October 25th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

14 people were detained in the clashes in Mokhe. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–An archbishop in Georgia claims the disputed building in Mokhe was formerly a church, and that allowing it to be used by Muslims is unacceptable. The conflict in the village Mokhe near Adigeni started last week when workers came to start dismantling […]

Tbilisoba kicks off Saturday

By | October 25th, 2014|Categories: Society|Tags: |

The Tbilisoba fair kicks off today in Georgia’s capital Tbilisi. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–This weekend marks the first Tbilisoba – the annual celebration of Georgia’s capital – under the new local government. A new mayor and new members of the City Council were elected in June. The list of events planned on Saturday and Sunday is quite […]

Suspect detained in journalist’s beating

By | October 24th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Journalist Zaza Davitaia had a broken rib and a concussion after being beaten on October 1. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Police two days ago detained a man who is suspected of beating a journalist working for a conservative newspaper. According to the Interior Ministry, the suspect insulted and beat Zaza Davitaia on October 22 in the center of Tbilisi. Davitaia […]

Georgia’s foreign trade turnover up 10% Jan-Sept ’14

By | October 24th, 2014|Categories: Economy, News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in the first nine months of 2014 was ten percent more than the year before, according to figures published Friday by the National Statistics Department, Geostat. The total turnover was USD 8,376 million, out […]

Foreign experts say evidence against Saakashvili is sound

By | October 24th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

Former President Mikheil Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Three foreign prosecutors visiting Georgia have concluded that there is enough evidence to continue the criminal prosecution of ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili and three of his associates. Georgia’s chief prosecutor’s office announced this on Thursday. […]

School children stay home in Mokhe as politicians explain conflict

By | October 23rd, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , |

Shura Mikeladze. (Photo published by Samkhretis Karibche.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Politicians Thursday began making sense of the conflict in Mokhe the day before, while local Muslims spent the whole night at the police station where people are being held who were detained. The scuffle began as Muslims tried to stop the […]

Mosque conflict continues in southern Georgian town

By | October 23rd, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Conflict continued Wednesday in the small Georgian village Mokhe, as an old mosque was dismantled from morning. Muslims tried to protest, but the Orthodox Christians opposed them and there came to a scuffle, during which 14 people were detained. […]

Ukraine support rallies in three Georgian cities

By | October 23rd, 2014|Categories: Europe, News|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Ukraine support rallies were held in three different Georgian cities on Wednesday. They were organized by the National Platform, which is an umbrella organization uniting more than a hundred non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Rallies were held […]

Bacho Akhalaia sentenced to seven years in jail

By | October 22nd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Bacho Akhalaia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One of the strongmen in Saakashvili’s government was Wednesday sentenced to seven years and six months in jail in a case concerning beating of prisoners and a fatal shooting in 2006. As the judge announced the verdict there was noise […]

Activists detained – want Saakashvili’s party banned

By | October 22nd, 2014|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A group of people from the organization Free Generation Tuesday evening demonstrated outside the office of the National Movement, Georgia’s former ruling party, demanding that it is declared illegal. In the ensuing scuffle, six person were detained […]

Russian drones threaten stability, Georgia says

By | October 22nd, 2014|Categories: News, Security|Tags: , , |

Tuesday’s meeting was facilitated by EUMM’s head, Toivo Klaar, and Ambassador Angelo Gnaedinger from the OSCE. (Photo published by EUMM.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russian drones are endangering the security and stability in the region, Georgia’s representatives said at a meeting of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) Tuesday. As DF Watch reported earlier, a Russian unmanned aerial vehicle […]

Violence against women highlighted at demonstration in Tbilisi

By | October 21st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Demonstrators gathered outside the government office on Tuesday to demand better protection of women after what they claim is 23 killings of women this year in incidents of domestic violence. It is not known who organized the demonstration, but it […]

Muslims in south of Georgia plan petition to dismiss mufti

By | October 21st, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

People in Mokhe are unhappy about the mufti’s performance in a conflict about a mosque. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Muslims in south Georgia are planning to start a petition to dismiss the country’s mufti, who they claim is illegitimate and gave them false promises. A few days ago, there was a conflict in the village Mokhe, where an old mosque is going […]

Tbilisi students demonstrate against gas station on university area

By | October 21st, 2014|Categories: News, Youth|Tags: |

(Photo: Irakli Kupradze.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Students demonstrated Monday against the construction of a new petrol station on an area that is part of Tbilisi State University. The company claims it owns all rights to the land and is not violating any law by building the gas station. Led by […]

Supporters of controversial ex-official rally outside PM’s residence

By | October 20th, 2014|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Supporters of Georgia’s former regime demonstrated outside the house of the prime minister on Sunday. Outraged passers-by confronted them, and several people were detained in the scuffle. The protesters demanded that the courts are freed from […]

Merabishvili gets three years in jail for Girgvliani murder

By | October 20th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Vano Merabishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian interior minister Vano Merabishvili was Monday sentenced to three years in jail for involvement in the cover-up of the murder of a bank employee in 2006. Tbilisi City Court found the former minister guilty and also prohibited him from […]

Locals demonstrate for and against turning mosque into culture center

By | October 20th, 2014|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Muslims in Mokhe, a village in the south of Georgia, protested on Saturday, because they don’t want to give up an old mosque and turn it into a culture center. The Orthodox population rallied against them demanding to construct a new culture center […]

Bad weather causes flooding in Georgia

By | October 19th, 2014|Categories: Environment, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Bad weather continued to cause problems in many parts of Georgia on Sunday. A storm was raging on the Black Sea coast while rivers were flooded, damaging roads and houses in villages. The river Khobistskali spilled over its banks, paralyzing the road […]