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Prepared by Diana Dundua
Friday, February 1

“Ramaz Sakvarelidze: the government may be ready to cooperate with the opposition!”

Akhali Taoba quotes political analyst Ramaz Sakvarelidze as recommending an ad hoc commission of opposition and government representatives to settle the country’s “political crisis.”

“This commission could be a political group to regulate the political crisis between the government and the opposition, and could solve a number of issues,” Sakvarelidze said.

The analyst adds that the current closed-door meetings are not helping the process. The lack of transparency strengthens the government’s hand, he says.

“Nino Burjanadze orders the government to come up with a plan to defeat poverty in Georgia”

Speaker of Parliament Nino Burjanadze says the administration is undergoing a crucial test the Georgian people in the next few months, according to Rezonansi.

On January 30 Burjanadze said the government, facing parliamentary elections in spring, must honor the pledges Mikheil Saakashvili made in his reelection campaign.

“I hope the executive body will be able to make real moves towards fulfilling election promises,” Burjanadze said. “The fact that the government is aiming to rid the country of poverty soon is a very important step.”

“Another successful Georgian to visit Tbilisi”

Sakartvelos Respublika describes Gia Gagnidze, who is to perform at the Zakaria Paliashvili Tbilisi Opera and Ballet State Academy Theater, as a successful Georgian opera singer living and working abroad.

On February 12, the Tbilisi State Conservatory honors graduate will perform the title role in Guiseppe Verdi’s “Rigoletto.”

He moved to Italy several years ago, where the newspaper says he was acclaimed as the best Rigoletto in the 2005 international “Verdi Voices” competition.

Gagnidze is booked for the next four years, the newspaper adds.

“Nino Kirtadze—best film director”

Georgian actor and director Nino Kirtadze was awarded a World Cinema Directing Award at the Sundance Film Festival on January 27, Akhali Taoba reports.

Her documentary, “Durakovo: Village of Fools,” was filmed over the course of a year in an isolated Russian village.

“[It] was one of the most difficult films for me to make, but it was worth the effort,” said Kirtadze, a former journalist who now lives in France.

The documentary follows the strongman leader of a village near Moscow, where new inhabitants are cowed into willing subservience.

Kirtadze is not the first Georgian director to be honored at the prestigious independent film festival. In 2006, Gela Babluani’s “13” won the World Cinema Jury Prize.