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The News in Brief

Tuesday, February 19

Medvedev does not see any unsolvable problems in relations with Ukraine and Georgia

Russian first deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who is expected to succeed President Vladimir Putin in the March election, says he does not see any unsolvable problems in relations between Russia and Georgia and Ukraine.

Speaking about cooperation with Kiev, Medvedev mentioned a recent gas supply crisis, when Moscow threatened to turn off Ukraine’s gas supply due to nonpayment, which was resolved through negotiations.

“It is different with Georgia. But even here there are no problems that cannot be solved. We have plenty of common points,” Medvedev said.

“We are not in power to choose the interlocutors; we will hold a dialogue with those who exist at present. I am sure that sooner or later we will find a common language with the [other] heads of Transcaucasian republics as well,” Medvedev said. (Black Sea Press)

Georgian-Abkhaz meeting under UN auspices underway in Geneva

A two-day meeting between Georgian and Abkhaz delegations, together with representatives of the UN secretary-general’s Group of Friends of Georgia, began yesterday in Geneva.

Secessionist Abkhazia withdrew from direct talks with Tbilisi in summer 2006 after Georgia regained control of Abkhazia’s Upper Kodori Gorge in a ‘police operation,’ installing a state-backed government-in-exile there.

“Issues related to confidence-building between the sides and peaceful ways of conflict regulation are being discussed at the Geneva meeting,” the State Ministry for Reintegration Issues said.

State Minister for Reintegration Issues Temur Iakobashvili and Georgian envoy to the UN Irakli Alasania are representing the Georgian side in the meeting. (Black Sea Press)

Refugees in Adjara to receive medical checkup

Refugees living in the autonomous republic of Adjara will undergo a medical checkup from February 16–19.

The initiative has been organized by the Tbilisi-backed Abkhaz government-in-exile, and its head, Malkhaz Akishbaia, is due to take part.

Some 4129 refugees are due to receive checkups and will be provided with medical treatment if they require it. A number of charities back the initiative. (Prime News)

Three Georgians missing in Germany

Three Georgian citizens disappeared without a trace in the Ludwigshafen area of southwest Germany. They were last seen January 30. On February 15, local newspapers reported, police arrested a suspect in the disappearance.

“We have a suspicion that violent crime might be the reason for the disappearance of the three Georgians,” a local prosecutor stated.

The Georgians reportedly were in Germany to do business involving cars. (Allgemeine Zeitung)

Georgian citizens among survivors of car accident in Turkey

Georgian citizens who survived a car accident last weekend in Turkey returned home early on February 18. Seven Georgian citizens received medical treatment at the Ferre village hospital, according to television reports.

The car accident occurred on February 17 near Samsun when a bus destined for Tbilisi veered off the road.

The bus operator said the accident was the result of poor weather conditions, but passengers reportedly plan to file a lawsuit against the company, accusing the driver of negligence. (Black Sea Press)