Yearly Archives: 2015

Georgian parliament again fails to hold crisis session

By | March 13th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament again failed to hold an extraordinary session about how to tackle a drastic drop in the value of the national currency, the lari. Again, the reason for cancelling the plenary session was that parliament members from the governing […]

New ski resort to open in Svaneti

By | March 13th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–A new ski resort is to open in the Svaneti region in the northwest of Georgia. The facility in Tetnuldi will open for tourists from December, 2015, according to the government’s press office. It will have the longest ski slope in South Caucasus […]

Activists clash at Interior Ministry building

By | March 13th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The leader of a small Georgian opposition party was detained by police for hooliganism on Thursday. The incident took place at an Interior Ministry building in the capital Tbilisi. Kakha Kukava, leader of Free Georgia, was there for some business, when […]

Six detained in clashes outside parliament in Tbilisi

By | March 12th, 2015|Categories: Youth|Tags: , , |

Lado Sadghobelashvili from Free Generation. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Six people were detained during clashes at a rally against the government’s economic policy outside the old parliament building in Tbilisi on Thursday. Free Zone, an activists group which supports the National Movement, demonstrated […]

Georgia to supply Abkhazia with power as Inguri Dam closes for maintenance

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Abkhaz and Georgian representatives met Thursday to discuss the closing of Europe’s largest hydroelectric dam, Inguri, for several months to carry out maintenance work. The power station is located partly on Georgia-controlled territory […]

Foreign investments up 39% in 2014

By | March 12th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

The new Tbilisi-Rustavi road is a Chinese investment. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Direct foreign investments in Georgia in 2014 was 39 percent more in 2014 than it was in 2013, according to a new preliminary report of the National Statistics Department (Geostat). The amount of the investments in 2014 was USD […]

University tower in Batumi sold for USD 25 million

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A disputed tower building in Batumi, Georgia, was sold on auction on Wednesday. The tower was meant to be a technical university, an initiative of ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili, but the idea stranded. The building was criticized […]

Sexuality conference goes ahead without incident

By | March 11th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A conference about sexuality went ahead without interruption in Tbilisi on Wednesday, despite an announced protest by conservatives. The conference was organized by Identoba, a group which works against discrimination on the basis of sexual […]

Meskhetians are denied residency permit in Georgia

By | March 11th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

The House of Justice in Tbilisi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Meskhetians who are being repatriated to Georgia are facing obstacles when trying to obtain a residency permit. Now human rights groups are defending their cases in the courts. Iunis Arifov has been living in Akhaltsikhe for the last eight years. […]

Georgia denies that financial dispute delayed Czech parliament’s ratification

By | March 11th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Kakhi Kaladze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia denies the veracity of a report that the Czech parliament has postponed the ratification of Georgia’s association agreement with the EU because of a dispute about a fine to a large Czech energy company in Georgia. A few days ago, […]

Parliament meets Friday for crisis session

By | March 11th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

President Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president on Tuesday called a special parliamentary session dedicated to the monetary crisis in the country on March 13 at 12:00. The president’s administration published a decree signed by Giorgi Margvelashvili, which specifies […]

Georgia and China sign new economic agreement

By | March 10th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Minister of Economy Giorgi Kvirikashvili signed a new economic agreement with China on Monday, during a visit to the country. From the Chinese side, the agreement was signed by Minister of Commerce Gao Hucheng. The agreement […]

Georgian battalion leaves for Afghanistan

By | March 10th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Ministry of Defense.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A farewell ceremony was held at Vaziani military base Monday for one hundred Georgian soldiers who are departing for Afghanistan. The soldiers, who come from the 31th infantry battalion, are to take part in the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission, […]

Crisis session in parliament this week

By | March 10th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president on Monday decided to call a special session of parliament to let the government face its critics after the national currency dropped thirty percent. Free Democrats MP Irakli Chikovani announced the decision after a meeting […]

Saakashvili’s party again demands answers from government

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

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

Georgia detains man for distributing counterfeit US dollars

By | March 9th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A man was detained in Georgia on Monday, accused of distributing counterfeit money. According to the Finance Ministry’s investigative service, the accused imported a large amount of counterfeit US dollars and sold it among Georgian citizens. The amount […]

No signs that Mokhe commission has done anything yet

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

Disputed building in Mokhe (DFWatch) TBILISI, DFWatch–The conflict between Christians and Muslims continues in a village in southern Georgia. A commission created in December to solve the dispute appears to have done nothing so far. Muslims in Mokhe demonstrated in February against the appointment […]

Activists rally in Tbilisi to demand women’s quotas in politics

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

“More women in parliament!” (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Women comprise 53 percent of the Georgian population but are heavily underrepresented in politics, say activists from Georgian Women’s Movement (GWM), a non-governmental organization working to promote women’s rights. On March 8, […]

Man accused of attacking journalist released on bail

By | March 8th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi City Court on Saturday released on bail a man suspected of beating a photojournalist and damaging his camera on March 4. The suspect, who is around 21 years old, was released on a 3,000 laris (about USD 1,500) bail pending the first […]

Women’s representation in Georgia unchanged for over a decade

By | March 8th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

Eka Beselia, head of the human rights committee in parliament. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The percentage of women in local government has remained unchanged for the last fourteen years, according to campaigners. There are currently 11 percent women in city and municipal assemblies. In the previous period, there were 10 percent […]

Names of two Georgians killed in New Jersey car crash released

By | March 8th, 2015|Categories: In brief|

Soso Makaridze Tbilisi, DFWatch – The Ministry of Defense released names of the two Georgian students at the US military academy in New Jersey killed during a car crash. The two died soon after Saturday midnight, after 9 am Tbilisi time. […]

Two Georgian military students in the US died in car crash

By | March 8th, 2015|Categories: In brief|

Identities of the dead students will be released by the Ministry of Defense after notification of their families in Georgia. TBILISI, DFWatch–Two Georgian students at military academy in New Jersey died in a car accident soon after Saturday midnight, at about 9 am Tbilisi time. The identity of the two, both in their early 20s, will be released by the Ministry of Defense after notification of their families in Georgia. […]

Three life prisoners get sentence converted to 20 years

By | March 7th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Three female prisoners who were in for life on Friday had their sentences converted to fixed term. The decision was announced by Zviad Koridze, head of the president’s pardon commission; one of two such bodies in Georgia. Instead of life, […]

Margvelashvili considering parliament session about currency crisis

By | March 7th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Margvelashvili is reconsidering the idea of having a special parliament session to discuss the crisis sparked by an over 30% drop in the value of the national currency, the lari. At the height of panic a few weeks ago, the president […]

Russia sends forces for exercises inside Georgian breakaway regions

By | March 7th, 2015|Categories: Security|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia is massing military forces inside the breakaway regions South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and announcing that it is starting military exercises. Official Tbilisi calls on the international community to react to this violation of Georgia’s […]

Govt coalition sabotaged vote over inquest into destruction of ancient site

By | March 6th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

Sakdrisi after the destruction. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliament in Georgia again failed to create a commission to study the destruction of an ancient gold mine in December. Scientists have found more than 5,400 years old human artefacts in the Sakdrisi cave near Bolnisi, but the archaeologically […]

Georgia’s govt fails to present crisis plan by March 5 deadline

By | March 6th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Nodar Khaduri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia says it has not yet prepared an action plan for tackling the currency crisis after a drastic drop in the value of the national currency lari over the last few months. An action plan was expected on March 5, after […]

Tbilisi slips three places in quality of living ranking

By | March 6th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi ranks 194th among 230 cities in the newest survey of quality of living published by Mercer’s. While last year’s report noted the Georgian capital as the lowest-ranked city in Europe at 191, residents may this year find some comfort […]

Saakashvili urges US senators to supply arms to Ukraine

By | March 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Youtube.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former President Mikheil Saakashvili, who is wanted in Georgia in four criminal cases, on Wednesday spoke at a session of the foreign relations committee in the US Senate. Saakashvili was recently appointed head of Ukrainian President Petro […]

Georgian opposition party’s board member helped beat journalist

By | March 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Info9.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Police in Georgia have detained a suspect after Wednesday evening’s attack on a photo reporter during an anti-government demonstration. Photographer Irakli Gedenidze from Interpressnews was beaten and had his camera damaged while […]

Journalist beaten in Tbilisi

By | March 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A photo journalist was beaten at a political demonstration in Tbilisi on Wedneday. Irakli Gedenidze, who works for new agency Interpressnews, came to Roses Square to cover a rally against the falling lari rate organized by the Reformers, Free Georgia […]

Georgia’s oldest member of parliament (88) retires

By | March 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The oldest member of the Georgian parliament, 88 year old Giorgi (Gogi) Ochiauri, has asked to be relieved for health reasons. Ochiauri is a professor at the Academy of Arts. He was elected from the National Movement party list in October, 2012. […]

Georgia pardons eight female prisoners to mark Mother’s Day

By | March 5th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

The women’s prison in Rustavi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president pardoned eight women on Monday in connection with Mother’s Day, which in Georgia is marked on March 3. Zviad Koridze, head of the president’s pardon commission, said at a press conference on Monday that four among […]

Prisoners with life sentence call off hunger strike

By | March 4th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–47 prisoners with life-long sentences have ended their hunger strike after more than a month without getting what they demanded. Almost 60 prisoners were part of the protest when it began in late January. Their demand was to be included […]

Court rules Sakdrisi should have remained protected heritage site

By | March 4th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

This is what Sakdrisi looked like before RMG Gold began mining there. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian government lost its appeal in the case about lifting the protected status of an ancient gold mine in order to open for commercial exploitation. Tbilisi City Court decided last summer that the ministry was wrong […]

Georgia’s governing coalition received most donations in 2014

By | March 4th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

Georgian Dream received four fifths of all donations in 2014. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian Dream received almost 82 percent of all political donations in Georgia in 2014. In total, 7.4 million laris (USD 3.7 million) was donated to political parties and subjects last year. The State Audit Office, a government body tasked […]

Number of Tourists declined in Jan-Feb, 2015: MIA

By | March 3rd, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Border with Azerbaijan (DFWatch) Tbilisi, DFWatch – In the wake of tightening visa regulations by the Geoorgian government and crisis in Ukraine, the latest data released by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia showed decline in numbers of tourists and overall visitors in Georgia. However, according to the same data, number of the transit visitors increased.  […]

Evnoy to Russia accuses Free Democrats of Incompetence

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

“I wonder why my opponents did not respond to Mr. Appathurai’s comments? Why didn’t they enter into the debate with him?” Zurab Abashidze asks Tbilisi, DFWatch – A cross-fire between political team of the Former Defense Minister and Georgia’s Special Envoy to Negotiations with Russia went sour after the latter’s remarks over Georgia’s NATO membership prospects. Zurab Abashidze, […]

Saakashvili’s party planning rallies to unseat the government

By | March 2nd, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

Zurab Japaridze from the National Movement. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s former ruling party, the National Movement, is preparing to take to the streets this spring in a change of roles since a few years back. The call comes after the government refused to show up in parliament on Saturday to debate […]

Georgian president speaks out against discrimination

By | March 2nd, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili on Sunday highlighted the most pressing problems Georgia faces in terms of discrimination, as he observed United Nation’s Zero Discrimination Day. He drew particular attention to violence against women and […]

Body of dead 19 year old handed over by South Ossetia

By | March 1st, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(EUMM.) TBILISI, DFWatch–On Saturday, the body of a dead 19-year-old handed over to Georgian authorities by the breakaway region South Ossetia. David Basharuli was found hanging from a tree in a small village in South Ossetia in January, after having been reported missing […]

World famous game designer gets inspired by Georgian myths

By | March 1st, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Mark Rein-Hagen in a game convention. TBILISI, DFWatch–“Amirani is the legendary first Zombie, some worship him. Legend has it that he is the original Prometheus and still chained to the Caucasus Mountains, he brought fire to humans and half life to us. Three Angels made him […]

Georgian leaders shocked by Nemtsov assassination

By | February 28th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s president and prime minister are shocked by the assassination of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov in Moscow. “I’m shocked by the assassination of Boris Nemtsov. He was a politician who fought tirelessly for the […]

Saakashvili hints Putin may be behind Nemtsov murder

By | February 28th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Georgian ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili lobbying for weapons to Ukraine in the U.S. Congress. (Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s former president, Mikheil Saakashvili, vaguely blames President Vladimir Putin of the assasination of a leading Russian opposition politician Friday night. In a Facebook post published early Saturday morning, Saakashvili recalls […]

Head of Georgia’s National Bank may be impeached for ‘inaction’

By | February 28th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The president of Georgia’s National Bank may be impeached after former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili on Thursday accused him of inaction in the face of a sudden thirty percent drop in the lari. The National Bank is an independent body whose […]

Georgia’s National Bank will not spend reserves on stabilizing lari

By | February 27th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Kadagidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s National Bank will not spend its reserves of foreign currencies to stabilize the lari despite a dramatic 30 percent drop earlier in the week. The bank’s president Giorgi Kadagidze explained at a briefing at noon on Friday that […]

Abashidze-Karasin talks resume after a four-month break

By | February 27th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Zurab Abashidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–On Thusday, Georgia and Russia resumed their economic and humanitarian talks after a four-month break. Georgia’s special envoy Zurab Abashidze and Russia’s deputy foreign minister Grigory Karasin discussed trade and reopening […]

Seven people detained in Georgia for making counterfeit money

By | February 27th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

The detainees are accused of making fake 20, 50 and 100 lari bills. ( TBILISI, DFWatch–Police in Georgia detained seven people on Thursday for manufacturing and distributing a large amount of counterfeit money. The Ministry of Internal Affairs announced that a group of criminals were in possession of special equipment for producing […]

Opposition groups blame government for lari’s fall

By | February 27th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Free Georgia, Reformers and Christian Democrats activists demonstrating outside the Finance Ministry building on Thursday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–There were several anti-government demonstrations in Tbilisi on Thursday in reaction to the thirty percent drop in the value of the national currency, the lari. Smaller groups that are not represented in parliament made up the brunt […]

Georgian parliament to meet on Saturday to discuss crisis

By | February 27th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–As the Georgian government is waiting to hear what ideas experts from the IMF have to deal with the weakened national currency, the lari, the former ruling party will be demanding answers at a special session of parliament on Saturday. […]

Ivanishvili blames the head of the National Bank for currency crisis

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

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili weighs in on the question of who is to blame for the more than 30% depreciation of the national currency in recent days. The businessman blames the National Bank and its head, who he assumes […]

Georgian lari stabilizes at record low level

By | February 26th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The lari, Georgia’s embattled national currency, showed signs of recovery on Thursday after both the National Bank and the government announced that they are taking measures to stop it from further depreciation. In recent days, the national […]

Parliament approves president’s chief justice nominee on third attempt

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

Nino Gvenetadze at Legal Issues Committee. Behind Vakhtang Khmaladze, the committee chairman. ( TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament on Wednesday approved Nino Gvenetadze as new Supreme Court chair. Two hearings on Monday failed because many Georgian Dream representatives didn’t show up and a quorum was not reached. Some were […]

What are two military trucks with Russian plates doing in Tbilisi?

By | February 25th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Photo from Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Pictures of two massive Russian trucks parked in Tbilisi went viral on social media Wednesday and made many think that Russian soldiers had paid Georgia an unwelcome visit. It caused concern among people to see photos of the trucks, which […]

Georgia to sell off state properties to deal with currency crisis

By | February 25th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia has presented a list of state properties to be sold off to bring in new money, as a means to deal with an unexpected 30% drop in the value of the national currency, the lari. Among the properties to be sold are the […]

Five victims of 1993 plane crash buried in Tbilisi

By | February 25th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Five more victims of a plane disaster during the Abkhazian war in 1993 were buried in Tbilisi on Tuesday after being recovered from a cemetery inside the breakaway region. Giorgi Chargeishvili, Malkhaz Piranishvili, Zurab Melishiani, Rusudan […]

Georgian govt to cut spending as lari drops rapidly

By | February 24th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia has proposed to cut spending in order to deal with a drastic drop in the value of the national currency, the lari. The lari began falling in November last year, and went from a level of 1.75 lari against the US dollar […]

Georgia doubles funding for religious minorities

By | February 24th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: |

Christmas mass at a Catholic church in Tbilisi. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia plans to spend 3.5 million laris on traditional religious groups and dedicate a new square to the idea of tolerance. As reported by DF Watch, there have been growing friction in Georgian society in recent […]

Ombudsman says lifting of ancient gold mine’s heritage status was illegal

By | February 24th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In Georgia, the ombudsman claims that a government official broke the law when he greenlighted the destruction of a 5,400 year old cave complex with invaluable archaeological findings. In December, the Russian company RMG Gold […]

Former Kvemo Kartli governor charged with embezzlement

By | February 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

Davit Kirkitadze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Finance Ministry’s investigative service on Monday brought embezzlement charges against a former government official. Former Kvemo Kartli governor Davit Kirkitadze is accused of having used state-owned machinery to carry out construction […]

Islam expert doesn’t see any rise in islamophobia in Georgia

By | February 23rd, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: |

Ruslan Baramidze (on the left) during a field work It is harder to be a Muslim anywhere, when international media headlines are dominated by terrorist groups, such as ISIS or Boko Haram. In Georgia, one out of ten citizens is a Muslim. What do we know about Islam in Georgia? Is Islamophobia on the rise here as well? […]

Lifetime prisoners in Georgia demand fixed terms and better conditions

By | February 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Rally in Kobuleti (Interpressnews photo) TBILISI, DFWatch–Family members and relatives of 55 prisoners with life sentence who claim being on hunger strike during almost a month, rallied on Sunday outside notorious Gldani No 8 jail in Tbilisi outskirts, demanding reducing their terms and better conditions for inmates. […]

One man dies in mining accident in Georgia

By | February 22nd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One man died in a mining accident in Western Georgia on Saturday. Early indications are that it was an accident. The victim is Kote Bakhutashvili, who worked in the transport district in the Mindeli mine in Tkibuli, a mining town in the north […]

Gudauri-Kobi road closed

By | February 22nd, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The road between Gudauri and Kobi in northern Georgia was Sunday closed for all traffic due to strong wind and limited visibility. Machinery has been deployed to the place by the Infrastructure and Regional Development Ministry. Vehicles are […]

Rally to save old naval station building in Poti

By | February 22nd, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Locals rallied Saturday in the Georgian port city Poti. They are opposed to a decision by the local government to demolish the naval station building. Demonstrators say the building is a symbol of the city, which lies on the Black Sea coast and […]

Abashidze-Karasin talks to resume later this month

By | February 21st, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Zurab Abashidze (left) and Grigory Karasin. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia and Georgia will resume their one-on-one talks in Prague in the end of February, the Georgian Foreign Ministry said in an announcement. The so-called Abashidze-Karasin talks, which are limited in scope to economic and other practical issues, […]

Uncertain if Georgian parliament will investigate destruction of ancient mine

By | February 21st, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliament in Georgia has still not created a committee to investigate why a pre-historic gold mine was destroyed by a Russian mining company in mid December last year. The Free Democrats on Friday nominated one of their members to chair […]

Red paint bombs thrown at Saakashvili Library in Tbilisi

By | February 21st, 2015|Categories: Youth|Tags: , , |

Lado Sadgobelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Five people were detained during tumults outside the Saakashvili Presidential Library in Tbilisi on Friday. Inside the building, activists for the National Movement held an exhibition dedicated to the one year anniversary of the revolution in […]

Road restrictions in north and west Georgia

By | February 21st, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

On the road between Gudauri and Kobi vehicles are not allowed to drive without snow chains. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Snow has made Georgian authorities enforce restrictions on several roads in mountainous regions in the west and north. On the road between Kutaisi and Ambrolauri, via Tkibuli, traffic is restricted on the 36km to 72km section. No trailers, […]

Georgian government’s economy experts gather as lari continues to fall

By | February 20th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: , , |

Economy Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili believes the situation will improve in the near future. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–As the Georgian lari reached a new record low, the Georgian government’s “economy team” gathered to come up with a plan to save the country’s economy. The US dollar is valued at 2.1771 laris in the most recent figures from the National Bank […]

Parliament replaces Free Democrats’ vice speaker

By | February 20th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Gubaz Sanikidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliament on Wednesday approved a new vice speaker, following the departure of one party from the government coalition. The Free Democrats left the Georgian Dream coalition November 5, and now the party’s highest […]

Former Tbilisi mayor must remain in detention, court decides

By | February 20th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Gigi Ugulava. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Tbilisi court decided on Wednesday that former Mayor Gigi Ugulava must stay in detention. Lawyers asked the court to release Ugulava on bail and promised to hand his ID card and passport over to prosecutors as a guarantee […]

Free Democrats: No deal with Saakashvili party

By | February 19th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

“I would not comment seriously on Baron Münchausen’s statements,” Irakli Alasania responded to Mikheil Saakashvili’s TV interview. (DF Watch.) Tbilisi, DFWatch -After exchanging barrels of criticism, Georgia’s two main pro-western political parties deny likelihood of future political alliance. At least one of them, Free Democrats of the former defense minister Irakli Alasania, […]

Georgian diplomat casts doubt on NATO membership goal

By | February 19th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Zurab Abashidze said it’s not on the agenda today or tomorrow for Georgia to join NATO. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A statement by a Georgian diplomat makes many ask whether the country’s foreign policy has changed. Russian relations special envoy Zurab Abashidze was answering a warning by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov yesterday, that Russia […]

Wrestling world champion confirmed as member of Georgian parliament

By | February 19th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Luka Kurtanidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian wrestler and double Olympic bronze medalist on Tuesday became a member of parliament. Luka Kurtanidze will be replacing Tamaz Avdaliani, who recently passed away due to illness. Eldar (Luka) Kurtanidze is on the same party list, […]

Ukraine’s ambassador to Georgia defends Saakashvili appointment

By | February 19th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Ukraine’s Ambassador to Georgia Vasyl Tsybenko. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Ukraine’s ambassador to Georgia on Monday defended his country’s appointment of Georgian officials who ex-President Saakashvili as an adviser, after being called in to the Foreign Ministry in Tbilisi. Saakashvili is wanted in four criminal […]

Georgia asks Ukraine to extradite Saakashvili

By | February 18th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Mikheil Saakashvili. (Maestro.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia has asked Ukraine to extradite ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili and ex Justice Minister Zurab Adeishvili. Both are working for the Kiev government despite being charged with a number of crimes in their home country. The Prosecutor […]

Freezing the Kremlin’s policy

By | February 18th, 2015|Categories: Opinion|Tags: |

Lasha Tughushi is founder of DFWatch, PhD and chair of Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum – Georgian National Platform. How Europe should respond to Putin at the Riga Summit Against the backdrop of a rain of bullets, and the rumble of tanks and cannons, Europe is preparing for the Riga Summit in May. Expectations are already low, but one likely positive decision is visa liberalization […]

Victoria Nuland visiting Tbilisi Tuesday

By | February 17th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Victoria Nuland. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–US Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland is visiting Georgia on Tuesday as part of a Caucasus tour. In Tbilisi, Nuland plans to meet with representatives of the government and opposition, as well as non-governmental organizations, so-called […]

Georgian kickboxer accused of robbery in Russia

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

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

Saakashvili’s party will never get back in power: Ivanishvili

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

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Godfather of the government coalition in Georgia, financier Bidzina Ivanishvili, said in a newspaper interview this weekend that he doesn’t think the National Movement party will ever be able to get back in power. The National Movement […]

Tbilisi summons Ukraine’s ambassador about Saakashvili appointment

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

Mikheil Saakashvili was last week appointed adviser to Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia has summed the Ukrainian ambassador to explain why ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili, who is wanted in his home country, has been appointed to a high position in Kiev. Ambassador Vasyl Tsybenko was asked to come to the […]

South Ossetia to sign treaty with Russia on Feb 18

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

Davit Sanakoyev. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian breakaway region South Ossetia plans to sign a ‘treaty of alliance and integration’ with Russia on February 18. This follows the signing of a similar treaty between the de facto government of the other breakaway region Abkhazia […]

Georgian president meets with candidates for new Supreme Court head

By | February 15th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili on Saturday met for more than five hours with candidates for new head of the Supreme Court to learn about their plans and programs. Margvelashvili is continuing his selection of candidates for new […]

City Hall employee accused of corruption placed in pre-trial detention

By | February 14th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

Tbilisi City Hall. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The head of Tbilisi City Hall’s supervision service was Friday placed in to pre-trial detention on charges of bribery. During the court hearing, Prosecutor Malkhaz Getsadze said that the accused, Jokia Bodokia, accepted a bribe from Darioushi, […]

Saakashvili appointed adviser to Ukraine’s Poroshenko

By | February 14th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Mikheil Saakashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili was Friday officially confirmed as adviser to the Ukrainian president, despite being wanted for crimes in his home country. Saakashvili will be head of the Advisory International Council of Reforms, […]

Georgia’s trade in January 30% lower than last year

By | February 13th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in January 2015 was 9 percent lower than last year, according to preliminary data published by the National Statistics Department, GeoStat, on Friday. The total turnover was USD 694 million, out of which export […]

City Hall employee denies corruption charges

By | February 13th, 2015|Categories: Politics|Tags: , , |

Mayor Davit Narmania denied that he is an old friend of the accused, Jokia Bodokia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The head of City Hall’s supervision service pleaded not guilty in the case of taking a bribe in return for facilitating the construction of a new hotel. Jokia Bodokia was detained on Wednesday. His lawyer, Giorgi Kavlashvili, told journalists that his client […]

Families rally in support of prisoners on life sentences

By | February 13th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Families demand life sentences converted so the prisoners may have hope of being free some day. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Families and relatives of prisoners with life sentences and incurable diseases rallied in front of the government house in Adjara on Thursday. They demand that the prisoners are offered a new chance to have their cases reviewed and their sentences […]

Georgia climbs further on press freedom index

By | February 13th, 2015|Categories: Media|Tags: |

Georgian journalists demonstrating for press freedom in 2011 . (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Press freedom has been improved in Georgia, judging by the latest annual index published by Reporters Without Borders. The country has moved up 15 places and is number 69 among 180 countries. The last time Georgia listed this high was […]

Parliamentarians object against criteria for selecting head of Supreme Court

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

Dimitri Khundadze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A large part of the governing coalition in parliament are against the criteria the president used when he recently selected candidates for new head of Supreme Court. The initiative began with 16 MPs from the Georgian Dream coalition. […]

Update: Restrictions on several roads due to snow

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

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

City Hall employee detained for corruption

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The head of the Supervision Service at Tbilisi City Hall was detained on Wednesday on suspicion of bribery. Jokia Bodokia is accused of having accepted a bribe of USD 180,000; ten percent of the price of constructing a new hotel. The money […]

Prisoners with life sentence continue hunger strike

By | February 11th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–60 prisoners with life sentence are continuing their hunger strike to demand a new assessment of their cases. The prisoners on lifelong term want to be included in a mass amnesty introduced by the new Georgian Dream coalition […]

Georgia’s governing coalition loses its majority in Adjara assembly

By | February 11th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Medea Vasadze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian Dream coalition has lost its majority of seats in the regional assembly in Adjara after one deputy broke ranks last week. Medea Vasadze explained in a statement that her decision was the result of two years and four months of analysis. […]

Two more officials resign in Georgia

By | February 11th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two more government officials resigned in Georgia on Tuesday; one regional police chief and a deputy department head in the Defense Ministry. Robert Grigalashvili, deputy head of military reporting, yesterday evening handed in his resignation […]

28 candidates for new head of Supreme Court

By | February 11th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Zakaria Kutsnashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president on Tuesday presented a list of 28 candidates for new head of Supreme Court. Most of the names on the list are unknown to the public. Among the few known names is Zakaria Kutsnashvili; a member of the Georgian […]

Georgian Defense Ministry official resigns due to public pressure

By | February 10th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The deputy head of the general inspection in the Georgian Defense Ministry resigned on Tuesday, explaining that he made the decision due to the accusations against him lately. Explaining the decision, Valeri Zumbadze wrote in a statement published […]

President’s annual address will be on March 18

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

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

Two boys on life support after being stabbed at Tbilisi school

By | February 10th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two teenage boys were hospitalized with serious injuries on Monday after being stabbed by another pupil at the same Tbilisi school. Police detained a suspect, who is also a minor. All three are pupils at Public School No 186 in Didi Digomi […]

Locals in Kutaisi accuse police wife of fatal hit-and-run

By | February 9th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

( TBILISI, DFWatch–The parents and relatives of a girl who died in a car accident three days ago in Kutaisi accuse the police of covering up what happened. They believe the real culprit is the wife of a policeman. The family of the victim Nana Giglemiani demonstrated Monday […]

Suspect in Yuri Vazagashvili murder placed in pre-trial detention

By | February 9th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Tbilisi City Court on Monday placed the suspect in the murder of Yuri Vazagashvili in pre-trial detention. The Prosecutor’s Office asked to keep the policeman in detention. He was detained yesterday, suspected of murdering Vazagashvili. […]

Road closed in Gudauri due to heavy snow

By | February 9th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Traffic is prohibited along the Gudauri-Kobi section of the old military highway in northern Georgia due to snow and danger of avalanche. According to the Infrastructure Ministry’s road department, no vehicles are allowed through in that stretch […]

Policeman detained for murder of human rights activist

By | February 9th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Yuri Vazagashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor General’s Office in Georgia has detained a police officer who is suspected of murdering human rights activist Yuri Vazagashvili three weeks ago. Yuri Vazagashvili had been campaigning for justice for his son Zurab, who was […]

Georgian PM: We are ready for negotiations with Russia

By | February 8th, 2015|Categories: Security|Tags: , |

Irakli Garibashvili at the Munich security conference. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Irakli Garibashivli says Georgia is ready for negotiations with Russia. The two countries have not had diplomatic relations since fighting a brief war more than six years ago. Georgia’s pro-European course stands firm, the PM […]

Poland ratifies Georgia’s EU agreement

By | February 8th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

( TBILISI, DFWatch–Poland ratified the association agreement between Georgia and the EU on Friday; the 13th EU member state to do so. The vote in the Sejm was 439 for ratification, none against and one abstaining. The agreement gives Georgia free trade access […]

Woman dies during robbery

By | February 7th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A woman died during a robbery of her house on Friday in Tbilisi. Her colleagues believe she was murdered and demand a proper investigation. Lela Avlokhashvili, 43, died while robbers were in her house stealing money and gold jewelry. Vendors […]

Georgian fishing boat owners protest in Poti

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Owners of about 40 fishing boats in Poti demonstrated Friday to demand less strict environmental protection in order to compete with the Turkish fishing fleet. The boat owners, who use seines to catch anchovy, think the law puts them […]

Escaped prisoner caught in Batumi

By | February 6th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Gurjaani Regional Court. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A prisoner who escaped from a court building two days ago has been apprehended in Batumi on the Black Sea coast. The prisoner escaped from the court cell in Gurjaani Regional Court on February 2 after hearing that he was being placed in […]

Two detained in Georgia for forging US visas

By | February 6th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two people were detained in Georgia on Friday for making fake US visas. Police working together with staff of the US embassy’s security department found that two people – a man about 40 and a woman about 50 – were making forged documents […]

Georgia downgrades its economic growth outlook

By | February 6th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: , |

Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian government has downgraded its economic growth outlook for 2015 from five to four percent. Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri said on Thursday that stagnation is expected in all neighboring countries, and this is reflected in the new […]

Georgia’s interior minister says ‘certain forces’ are planning a coup

By | February 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Interior Minister Vakhtang Gomelauri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s new interior minister says ‘certain forces’ are attempting to destabilize the country, but Georgia won’t allow a ‘Ukraine scenario’ to be repeated in Georgia. After journalists asked Vakhtang Gomelauri to specify if he meant the former ruling […]

Work halted on new hotel in Vake Park

By | February 5th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: , , |

Vake Park one year ago. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–City Hall temporarily halted construction work on a new hotel in Vake Park in central Tbilisi on Wednesday. Environmental activists from a group called Guerrilla Gardening gathered in the park warning that the workers are in violation of law […]

Two more former officials charged in Zhvania case

By | February 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Mamuka Gvaramia said the charges are politically motivated. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former chief prosecutor and a deputy head of the National Forensic Bureau were Wednesday charged with involvement in the murder of PM Zurab Zhvania in 2005. The Prosecutor’s Office claims the two exceeded official powers […]

Wanted Georgian ex-justice minister spotted in Kiev

By | February 5th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Zurab Adeishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian Justice Minister Zurab Adeishvili, who has been wanted for more than a year and is subject to an Interpol Red Alert, was recently spotted in Ukraine. The Georgian Prosecutor General’s Office has now asked the Ukrainian government […]

Georgia wants to give locals preferential treatment in labor market

By | February 4th, 2015|Categories: Society|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian government is preparing to impose a protectionist labor migration law, under which local employees only will be allowed to hire a foreigner if they cannot find a local who satisfies their requirements. The draft law on Labor […]

Robbers target Georgia’s small bank service centers

By | February 4th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

One of the service centers for Liberty Bank. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A bank service center was robbed in Tbilisi Wednesday. This is the fourth such robbery in a short time. An armed robber attacked Bank of Georgia’s service center on Noneishvili Street in Gldani, northern Tbilisi. It is still unknown whether […]

Six detained in Tbilisi at rally against National Movement

By | February 4th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , |

Demonstrators blame the National Movement for encouraging Georgian youth to join the war in Ukraine. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Six people were detained for petty hooliganism in Tbilisi on Tuesday, during a rally outside the office of the National Movement. The rally was organized by the youth movement Free Generation, which demands to convict former officials and ‘restore justice.’ […]

Prisoner on the run in Kakheti, eastern Georgia

By | February 4th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

Gurjaani Regional Court. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Police in Georgia are searching for a prisoner who escaped from a court building on Monday. The man, a resident of the a village Velistsikhe, is charged with injuring a person with a weapon. The regional court in Gurjaani, in the Kakheti region […]

Belarus and Georgia resume cooperation, Lukashenko plans visit

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko plans to visit Georgia in April. Georgian agriculture minister Otar Danelia said this today during a visit to Minsk. Danelia is there in connection with a session of the newly revived Georgia-Belarus […]

Three percent drop in visitors to Georgia in January

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Three percent less people visited Georgia in January 2015, compared to the same period last year, according to new figures from the Ministry of internal Affairs. The figures were presented on Tuesday by the ministry’s Department of Analysis, […]

Georgian PM downplays Ivanishvili’s criticism of NGO leaders

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian prime minister on Monday downplayed criticism of three NGO leaders by businessman Bidzina Ivanishvili last week. The billionaire who created the coalition now in power said in a TV interview that an organization he runs is working […]

Eleven police officers detained in Georgia

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

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

Rally in Tbilisi to demand accountability for Saakashvili regime

By | February 2nd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

Demonstrators demand to ‘restore justice’ and punish officials that committed violations during the Saakashvili regime. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Over a thousand people demonstrated in central Tbilisi on Saturday, demanding that officials that broke the law during the Saakashvili regime are held to account. They demand that officials in the Saakashvili regime who committed crimes are punished, […]

Seat in Georgian parliament empty as MP dies of illness

By | February 2nd, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Tamaz Avdaliani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A member of parliament from the Georgian Dream coalition has died as result of serious illness, parliament’s press office said on Friday. Tamaz Avdaliani, who was born September 16, 1964. In October, 2012, was elected through the party list […]

Activists say ‘SOS’ for Old Tbilisi as massive development goes ahead

By | February 1st, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: , , , |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Hundreds of people marched through Tbilisi on Saturday to protest against the construction of a number of massive buildings in different locations mostly in the old part of the capital. Protesters gathered outside Tbilisi City Council and walked toward […]

Georgia creates body to investigate crimes by legal proceedings

By | January 31st, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

The Prosecutor General’s Office. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office in Georgia wants to create a new department which will investigate offenses committed in the course of legal proceedings. The initiative comes after the office has received thousands of applications from victims of alleged […]

Ivanishvili plans tv series about Saakashvili’s nine year rule

By | January 30th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili plans a TV series about the nine years of National Movement rule. In an interview with Imedi TV on Wednesday, Ivanishvili said the name of the series will be ‘9+1’, which indicates the nine […]

HRW criticizes Georgia for not prosecuting political violence

By | January 30th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–In a new report, Human Rights Watch criticizes Georgia for failing to prosecute attacks on activists from the National Movement, even though the perpetrators have been identified. In its latest world report, the organization writes that during […]

Ivanishvili on collision course with the U.S. on role of NGOs

By | January 30th, 2015|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili is preparing a report about three NGO activists. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The godfather of the government in Georgia, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, was rebuked by the US ambassador Thursday after criticizing three of the most influential NGO leaders in the country. In a long TV interview on one of the national TV […]

Quota system in Georgian universities helps ethnic minorities, but is easy to abuse

By | January 30th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch- The possibility to study Georgian intensively for one year and then to continue studies in any Georgian university seems like a great opportunity for students coming from ethnic minority background. How helpful is the integration program […]

New day of protest against hotel in Vake Park

By | January 29th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: |

(Guerilla Gardening/Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Environmental activists in Tbilisi on Wednesday continued their protest against the construction of a hotel inside one of the city’s central parks. City Hall decided to fine the company for minor violations, but protesters want a halt in the construction […]

Gulf under investigation for tax avoidance in Georgia

By | January 29th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Finance Ministry’s investigation service is going through the accounting documents of Gulf, one of the largest oil retail companies in Georgia. According to the vice president of the company’s marketing department, the service entered […]

Ivanishvili’s latest reprimand: Do they think Margvelashvili is doing magic?

By | January 29th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Imedi TV.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Bidzina Ivanishvili, the businessman who created the Georgian Dream coalition, on Wednesday criticized the president in an interview with Imedi TV. For the last year, the president and prime minister in Georgia have been in a subdued conflict. […]

Ivanishvili criticizes Saakashvili’s party for urging youth to join Ukraine war

By | January 29th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Bidzina Ivanishvili. (Imedi TV.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili criticizes the party of ex-President Saakashvili, the National Movement, of encouraging youth to volunteer for the war in Ukraine. “[Mikheil] Saakashvili and others who wish to see Georgians going […]

Leader of 2006 Kodori mutiny released after entering plea deal

By | January 28th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Emzar Kvitsiani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former warlord who was sentenced to 12 years in jail last November, was Wednesday released after entering a plea agreement. Emzar Kvitsiani, who was convicted of leading the mutiny in Kodori Gorge in 2006 and for setting up an illegal paramilitary […]

Lowest lari rate for eleven years

By | January 28th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

The National Bank. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian lari has dropped in value again and is now traded for more than two US dollars – the lowest exchange rate for the last eleven years. According to the National Bank, the exchange rate for lari on January 28 is 2.0144 for one USD. […]

Consultations continue to find new head of Georgia’s Supreme Court

By | January 28th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

The brothers Kublashvili: Pavle (inset) was head of parliament’s judiciary committee and Kote head of Supreme Court. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Consultations are continuing in Tbilisi’s political circles to find a new head of Supreme Court. Current head Kote Kublashvili’s term expires in the end of February. During Kublashvili’s ten year tenure, the court system in Georgia became […]

Prisoner was to have murdered mother of Buta Robakidze

By | January 28th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Ia Metreveli. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A prisoner serving time for drug related crime claims he was forced to carry out a murder in 2008, but the plan was called off. The prisoner’s story was discovered by the Georgian ombudsman, who recommended that the case be investigated […]

Trade union blames weak worker protection for deaths in the workplace

By | January 27th, 2015|Categories: Society|Tags: , |

This woman’s job is to remove pieces of wood and other impurities from the manganese ore, using her bare hands. Chiatura. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Trade Union blames a weak labor code for what it says is a rise in the number of deaths in the workplace since the Saakashvili regime took away almost all worker protection in 2006. During Saakashvili, the labor code was changed so there […]

Deputy head of NATO visiting Georgia, will visit planned training center

By | January 27th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

NATO Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow. (NATO.) TBILISI, DFWatch–NATO’s deputy secretary general, Alexander Vershbow, will visit Georgia January 29-30. The purpose of the trip is to monitor the implementation of a ‘substantive package’ offered by the alliance at the Wales summit last summer, according […]

Prisoners with life sentence on hunger strike to be part of 2013 amnesty

By | January 27th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Prisoners with life sentence feel they are being discriminated against, Dimitry Lortkipanidze explained. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–At least 50 prisoners serving life sentences have gone on hunger strike to demand to benefit from a mass amnesty introduced in early 2013. The prisoners want to change their life sentences into a set number of years, after which […]

Georgian PM appoints new interior minister

By | January 26th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Vakhtang Gomelauri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili on Monday appointed Vakhtang Gomelarui as new interior minister after the previous minister resigned in connection with the bombing of a human rights activist. Until now, Gomelauri served as first deputy […]

Yuri Vazagashvili buried Sunday

By | January 26th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch—Yuri Vazagashvili was Sunday buried in the village Karapila, near Kaspi, 50 km west of the capital. He was buried next to his son Zurab, who died in a police operation in 2006 during the Saakashvili regime and became a symbol of the heavy-handed […]

Lithuanian PM starts two day visit to Georgia

By | January 26th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Lithuanian prime minister on Monday starts a two day visit to Georgia. On the first day of his visit, Algirdas Butkevičius will meet his Georgian counterpart Irakli Garibashivli after an official welcoming ceremony at the government office […]

Few of the ombudsman’s recommendations are followed

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

Ombudsman Ucha Nanuashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Only 35 out of 154 of the ombudsman recommendations in 2014 were followed, according to a report published on Friday. 22 out of the 154 recommendations to central and local government bodies, or the government officials were partly fulfilled, 47 not fulfilled […]

More people leave Georgia’s law enforcement after activist’s death

By | January 25th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The fallout from a bombing of a rights activist in Georgia last week continued Sunday with several prosecutors asking to be suspended and police officers being fired. On Friday, the interior minister resigned. This was followed by the […]

Police official in Georgia resigns following bombing of activist

By | January 24th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A high-ranking police official in Georgia resigned Friday evening. His resignation follows that of the interior minister, and is related to the bombing of a rights activist last Wednesday. The activist, Yuri Vazagasvili, was blown up while standing […]

Georgia’s interior minister resigns

By | January 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Alexandre Chikaidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian Interior Minister Alexandre Chikaidze, who was hardly seen in public during his tenure, on Friday resigned following the controversial murder of Yuri Vazagashvili. In his letter of resignation to the PM, Chikaidze writes that he made the […]

Appeals Court upholds nine year sentence against Megis Kardava

By | January 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former government official charged in the case of Sergo Tetradze’s murder, was on Friday sentenced to nine years in jail by the Appeals Court of Georgia. Megis Kardava, who held the post of deputy at the military police department, was found […]

Georgian Dream hesitates over inquest into destruction of gold mine

By | January 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Protesters were outraged when the Culture Ministry suddenly allowed RMG Gold to proceed with mining blasts at Sakdrisi in December. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Doubt has been cast on the Georgian parliament’s plans to have an inquest into the destruction of a prehistoric gold mine, as a leading parliamentarian says he no longer thinks it’s a good idea. The ancient cave complex in Sakdrisi in southern […]

Suspect in Batumi murder of girl, 16, detained in Iran

By | January 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Mohamadamin Ruintan is suspected of having murdered a 16 year old girl, Mariam Kochalidze, in July 2013. (Ministry of Internal Affairs.) TBILISI, DFWatch--Iran has detained the suspect in the murder of a 16 year old girl in Batumi in July, 2013. Mariam Kochalidze was found dead with her throat slashed and a large stone [...]

Coffin of Georgian who fought in Ukraine greeted at Tbilisi airport

By | January 22nd, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The body of a Georgian volunteer fighter who died in Ukraine on January 17 arrived in Georgia on Wednesday and will be brought to his hometown Khashuri today. Earlier, there was a public funeral for Tamaz Sukhiashvili, 36, in Kiev, which was attended […]

Over 30 witnesses questioned about Yuri Vazagashvili’s death

By | January 22nd, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

Yuri Vazagashvili (right) with Bidzina Ivanishvili in February 2012. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–At least thirty people have so far been questioned about the death of Yuri Vazagashvili, father of a victim of a controversial police operation in 2006. Zurab Vazagashvili’s death nearly nine years ago became a symbol of the heavy-handed police […]

China’s ambassador briefed about investment prospects in agriculture

By | January 22nd, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: , , |

China’s Ambassador to Georgia Yue Bin met with Georgia’s Minister for Agriculture Otar Danelia on Wednesday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s agriculture minister on Wednesday met with the Chinese ambassador to discuss bilateral relations and the mostly positive dynamic in trade relations. Ambassador Yue Bin said that the year 2014 was the most successful, fruitful and positive […]

Return of dead 19 year old discussed at IPRM meeting

By | January 21st, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

(EUMM.) TBILISI, DFWatch–At a regular field meeting Tuesday between the parties in the 2008 South Ossetia war, Georgia brought up the question of how to bring home the body of a 19 year old boy who was recently found dead in South Ossetia after being missing for six months. […]

Man blaming police of the son’s death, killed at his grave

By | January 21st, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

It is still unclear whether Yuri Vazagashvili was killed or committed suicide. (Interpressnews) Tbilisi, DFWatch – A father of a victim of controversial police special operation back in 2006 was found dead on the grave of his son as result of an explosion on Tuesday. It is still unknown whether it was a suicide or a homicide, […]

Muslims in northeast Georgia demonstrate against Charlie Hebdo

By | January 20th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , |

Muslims rally in a village Duisi, Pankisi Gorge (Interpressnews) TBILISI, DFWatch–Muslims in a valley northeast in Georgia demonstrated Monday against the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo for publishing a caricature depicting Prophet Mohammad on January 14. People in the village Duisi, in Pankisi Gorge, believe the cartoon […]

Body of Georgian priest from Norman Atlantic arrives in Tbilisi

By | January 20th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president on Monday posthumously honored priest Ilia Kartozia, 27, for his bravery rescuing people in the Norman Atlantic ferry disaster. The fire on Norman Atlantic started on December 28. There were eight Georgians aboard, all of whom […]

Third Georgian fighter dies in the war in Ukraine

By | January 19th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

Tamaz Sukhiashvili would have become 37 years old on Sunday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A third Georgian has died in the war in Ukraine. Tamaz Sukhiashvili, 36, was killed in the battle for Donetsk Airport near the village of Pisky on January 17, fighting alongside Kiev’s forces. Three more Georgians were slightly wounded in the same battle. […]

Georgia’s foreign trade grew 5% in 2014

By | January 19th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in 2014 was five percent more than the previous year according to preliminary data from the National Statistics Department, GeoStat. The turnover totalled USD 11,459 million. According to the preliminary […]

Chinese citizen detained for facilitating prostitution

By | January 18th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Photo shows an earlier police razzia of a brothel in Adjara, November 2013. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Chinese citizen was on Sunday detained in Georgia’s second largest city Kutaisi for providing premises used for prostitution. According to the Interior Ministry, the suspect rented a house on Chavchavadze Avenue 33 and opened a parlour offering […]

23 Georgian sailors stranded on five ships in Benin

By | January 18th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–23 Georgian sailors have been stuck on five ships under Greek management close to Benin in western Africa. The sailors are asking for help because their supplies of food and water are running low and they haven’t received their salaries for about six months. […]

Georgian Church explains its position regarding Charlie Hebdo

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

The Patriarchy, the governing body of the Georgian Orthodox Church. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In its first comments about the Charlie Hebdo tragedy, the Georgian Orthodox Church condemns the terror act but also calls on the government ‘to set a limit to freedom of expression in order to protect other internationally recognized human rights.’ […]

Sharp drop in money transfers into Georgia

By | January 16th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Money transfers to Georgia in December 2014 were 24.9 percent lower than in the same period in 2013, according to new figures from the National Bank. The amount of money transfers in December was USD 116.1 milllion, which was USD 38.5 million […]

Film made by Georgian director nominated for Oscar

By | January 16th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Facebook.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A film made by a Georgian filmmaker which was previously nominated for a Golden Globe, was Thursday nominated for an Oscar. Tangerines, a Georgian-Estonian co-production, was selected for the short list of foreign language film nominees together […]

Missing 77 year old found dead near South Ossetia

By | January 16th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A 77 year old man who went missing a few days ago in the village Ergneti next to South Ossetia was found dead on Thursday. Valiko Kasradze disappeared late at night on January 12. His family thought he might have lost his way and been detained […]

Georgian government plans to sell university tower in Batumi

By | January 16th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: |

National Movement activists demonstrating outside the university tower. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia wants to sell a high-rise in Batumi that was built during the previous government to be used for a new university. Then president Mikeil Saakashvili opened the 35-storey tower in 2012, which has a small ferris wheel […]


By | January 15th, 2015|Categories: Opinion|Tags: , |

Victims of the Paris terror comemmorated in Tbilisi. (Interpress “Freedom of speech and the press are supreme values that must be duly protected everywhere and at all times,” Irakli Garibashvili stated before flying to the global peace rally in Paris. These are the words of the man who was the head of the Ministry of Internal […]

Four Georgians nominated for Ukraine’s Justice Ministry

By | January 15th, 2015|Categories: News|

Gia Getsadze is nominated for the position of the first deputy justice minister in charge of fighting corruption (Photo from Facebook) Former deputy interior minister and three more former Georgian officials have been nominated on high positions in Ukaraine Justice Ministry and will officially be appointed immediately after getting Ukrainian citizenship. All of them [...]

PM Garibashvili: no obligation to attend the presidents ‘symbolic’ address

By | January 14th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Irakli Garibashvili, the PM, at the opening ceremony of the five-stars hotel in Borjomi resort town (Press Office photo) Tbilisi, DFWatch – Irakli Garibashvili, the PM, once more publicly disregards the President stating that government members have no obligation to attend the latter’s the state of the nation address at the parliament in February. The constitution doesn’t oblige government […]

Georgian parliamentarians visit Kiev

By | January 14th, 2015|Categories: News|

Tbilisi, DFWatch – Amid tensions over appointment of former Georgian officials on the high positions in Ukraine, Georgian parliamentary delegation visits Kiev Nov. 19, according to the chair of parliament’s foreign affairs committee. Tedo Japaridze, […]

Saakashvili criticized for his Syria statement

By | January 13th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Giorgi Margvelashvili advises Saakashvili to stop damaging the country’s interests. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President of Georgia slammed his predecessor Mikheil Saakashvili, accusing him of manipulating with important and strategic issues of the country’s security just for his own interests. Mikheil Saakashvili earlier in Monday criticized […]

Man taken from his garden at South Ossetia border

By | January 13th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Dvani. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One Georgian was detained Monday in a village that lies on the de facto border with the breakaway region South Ossetia. One more is missing in another village, and presumed detained. The first incident took place in Dvani, a village which […]

One Chinese worker injured in fire at youth Olympic festival site

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Chinese worker was injured in a fire on Sunday on the construction site of the future Olympic village in Tbilisi. About 700 square meters was burned in the fire. The Chinese worker who was injured was taken to hospital. The fire spread across […]

Ivanishvili has abandoned the idea of hosting TV show

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

Ivanishvili will not be a host on the talk show ‘2030’, which is to go on air next month. (Photo: Channel 1.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Former Georgian PM Bidzina Ivanishvili has finally abandoned the idea to host a political talk show on a TV channel owned by his rapper son Bera.  The launch of the talk show has been postponed several times. Finally, in the end of 2014, it was announced […]

Traffic restrictions lifted on most roads in Georgia after heavy snowfall

By | January 11th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: , , |

Many roads have been closed until now due to heavy snowfall that began on January 6. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Traffic restrictions have been lifted on most road sections in Georgia after being closed due to heavy snowfall that began on January 6. According to the most recent data from the road department, traffic is now moving freely through the Rikoti […]

Chemtai Yegon – a Kenyan woman living and teaching in Georgia

By | January 10th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , |

Teaching in Tserakvi village. Chemtai definitely prefers living in the village. “If my university was in the village I would go tomorrow” When Chemtai Yegon, a young woman from Kenya, came to Georgia a few years ago to teach English and study Georgian, she faced a lot of challenges, like her first real winter with frost and snow, ‘no one speaking English’, and some encounters with aggressive […]

Another archaeological site in Georgia being destroyed

By | January 10th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Rustavi 2.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Another historical object allegedly more than 6,000 years old is believed to be destroyed by a construction company. In a report by the TV channel Rustavi 2, archeologist Iulon Gagoshidze tried to raise the alarm about excavation work at Beri Kldeebi settlement, […]

Locals in Tbilisi demonstrating against Chinese road construction company

By | January 9th, 2015|Categories: Environment|Tags: , , |

Representatives for the company Sinohydro Corporation Ltd met Kvemo Kartli governor Giorgi Mghebrishvili and Rustavi mayor Davit Jikia in April 2014. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In a village just south of the Georgian capital Tbilisi, locals are protesting against a Chinese company which they claim is destroying their farm land. Residents in Krtsanisi fear that if the company continues its work, a road leading to the village […]

Snowfall causing interruptions several places in Georgia

By | January 8th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

Two Latvian tourists are stranded in the Jvari pass due to the snow. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Two Latvian tourists are stranded in Jvari pass in the north of Georgia. Snowfall is also causing other problems in parts of Georgia. Some areas in the north are without electricity and food supplies. A rescue operation is underway in Jvari pass […]

Weak ruble and new immigration law impacting Armenians in Georgia’s south

By | January 8th, 2015|Categories: Minorities|Tags: , , |

Statue in Akhalkalaki of Mesrop Mashtots, the creator of the Armenian alphabet. (Interpressnews.) It is a hard winter for ethnic Armenians living in Georgia’s southern Samtskhe-Javakheti region. The fall of the ruble has led to less money being sent home from relatives who have found jobs in Russia, and Georgia’s new immigration law is forcing people […]

Heavy snow and avalanche danger on Georgian roads

By | January 7th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Weather created difficulties on roads of Georgia over the few days (Road Department photo) Tbilisi, DFWatch – Parts of the important roads in Georgia, including a highway connecting it with Armenia are still blocked due to heavy snow and danger of the deadly avalanches. According to the most recent data of the Georgia’s Road Department, […]

Georgia had 2% growth in tourism in 2014

By | January 6th, 2015|Categories: Economy|Tags: |

Tourists at Jvari Church in Mtskheta. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia had a two percent growth in tourism in 2014. More than 5.4 million people visited the country last year, which is a 1.9 percent increase compared to 2013. The Interior Ministry published its monthly statistics of visitors to Georgia, […]

Three suspects admit double murder during robbery

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

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Police in Tbilisi on Sunday detained three suspects who all pleaded guilty of the murder of two brothers during a robbery of an office. According to the Interior Ministry, the crime took place in Dighomi, a northern Tbilisi suburb. The perpetrators, […]

Missing 19-year old boy found dead in Akhalgori

By | January 6th, 2015|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A 19-year-old boy who has been missing for six month has been found dead in South Ossetia. Davit Basharuli was declared missed last summer. On Monday, locals discovered his body hanging from a tree between Akhalgori and the village Ikoti, […]

Three killed when train crashed with minibus

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

The minibus was flung tens of meters away when it was hit by the train. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Three died and dozens were injured as result of a minibus crashing with a train in western Georgia on January 2. The injured remain in hospital, several of them in a serious condition. Among the injured there were four minors. The accident […]

Georgian priest who died in ferry disaster praised for heroic rescue effort

By | January 4th, 2015|Categories: News|Tags: , |

(Photo by Italian Navy.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A witness has told how a Georgian priest helped save people before he himself perished in the Norman Atlantic disaster. Father Ilia Kartozia reinforced other passengers’ confidence, which aided in the evacuation of the doomed ferry, Irakli, a Georgian survivor, […]

One believed dead, three more missing after avalanche

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

Bakhmaro. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–One person is believed to have been taken by an avalanche in Bakhmaro, in the Guria region of western Georgia. The victim was part of a group of four youth who were visiting the winter resort on December 31. All of them are still missing and rescue […]

Eurasian Customs Union Crawling Closer to Georgia

By | January 2nd, 2015|Categories: Opinion|Tags: |

Nino Evgenidze is Executive Director of the Economic Policy Research Center. In 2015 Armenia became a full-fledged member of the Russian-led Eurasian Customs Union (ECU). Georgia, on the other hand signed Association Agreement (AA) and the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area Agreement (DCFTA) with the European Union. […]