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Prepared by Diana Dundua
Tuesday, January 15

“Boris Chochiev accuses the Sanakoyev administration of cutting the water pipeline”

Akhali Taoba reports that the separatist de facto South Ossetian administration is accusing the region’s Tbilisi-backed alternative administration of deliberately interrupting supplies of drinking water.

Secessionist official Boris Chochiev says his administration is planning to examine the water pipeline supplying the breakaway region for “illegal damage” done by the Tbilisi-backed “puppet administration.”

“Because of [alternative administration head] Dmitry Sanakoyev’s criminal activities, the South Ossetian people are without drinking water. The Georgian authorities are manipulating the pipeline to try and convince the Ossetian people, and the international community, that only the so-called ‘alternative administration’ cares about the republic. But we will not stop fighting to show the truth,” Chochiev said.

“Ramaz Klimiashvili: in the January 5 early presidential election, people voted for the united opposition, not Levan Gachechiladze!”

Opposition coalition candidate Levan Gachechiladze took more votes than any other opposition candidate in the snap presidential election, Mteli Kvira writes.

Gachechiladze received more than 25 percent of the vote, while the next strongest opposition candidate took barely seven percent.

Political analyst Ramaz Klimiashvili argues that Gachechiladze’s relative success was not at the expense of other opposition candidates. It was not the candidate himself who won that support, Klimiashvili told the newspaper, but rather his status as the joint pick of the nine-party opposition coalition.

“Other candidates’ ratings did not decrease. If there had been someone other than Gachechiladze [for the coalition candidate] the people would have voted for him or her [in the same numbers],” Klimiashvili stated.

“Abkhaz separatists freed 35 arrested Gali residents”

Sakartvelos Respublika writes that 35 residents of Gali, reportedly arrested by Abkhaz separatist forces at the start of the year, have been freed.

Gali, predominantly populated by ethnic Georgians, is along the southern administrative border with secessionist Abkhazia.

Tornike Kilanava, the Gali coordinator for the Tbilisi-backed Abkhazian government-in-exile, says all of those arrested would be returned to their homes.

“The relatives of the arrested people are no longer coming to us for help. Maybe the separatists freed them because they did not want us to start an investigation,” Kilanava suggested.

“Government to come up with plan for cheap loans and increased pensions in 50 days”

The government has given itself 50 days to work out a plan for issuing cheap loans and increases to pensions, according to Akhali Taoba.

“The government will need 50 days to introduce legislative and budget amendments, which will also aim to increase pensions to USD 100 in the near future,” president-elect Mikheil Saakashvili is quoted as saying in a recent press conference.

“Experts from the Bureau for International Language Coordination visit Georgia”

Sakartvelos Respublika reports that a two-person delegation from the Bureau for International Language Coordination is in Georgia for a week-long visit.

The purpose of their visit is to observe the teaching of foreign languages in local schools and the army.

The guests will see military bases in Vashlijvari, Vaziani, Senaki and Gori. They will also pay visits to the Sachkhere Mountain Training School and an English language instruction center for the Poti navy.

The Bureau for International Language Coordination, which is affiliated with NATO, pays similar visits to Georgia every year.