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The News in Brief

Tuesday, June 10
MPs hit back at Moscow mayor

Georgian MPs have criticized Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov’s recent call for Georgia to recognize its breakaway regions.

“[Luzhkov] is a mouthpiece of our enemies sitting in the Kremlin. Mr. Luzhkov will never be a welcome guest in Georgia,” MP Irakli Kavtaradze said.

Luzhkov said on the weekend that Tbilisi should recognize the independence of its breakaway regions in order to resolve the conflicts

“I think that everything will become easier if Georgia recognizes the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia,” Luzhkov told journalists on the sidelines of an economic forum in St Petersburg.

Representatives of the Georgian government suggested Luzhkov’s statement is related to his business interests in Abkhazia.

The mayor of Moscow was declared persona non grata in Ukraine recently after commenting that Sevastopol and Crimea should belong to Russia.
(Prime News)

Russian does not confirm possible second meeting of presidents

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov did not confirm reports that President Mikheil Saakashvili will soon meet his Russian counterpart for a second time.

“I have no information which would let me make such an announcement that a new Russo-Georgian summit will be held in the near future,” Lavrov told journalists.

President Mikheil Saakashvili met with his new Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev on June 6.
(Prime News)

Georgian soldier to be buried in Rustavi on Thursday

The funeral of Irakli Kordzaia, the Georgian soldier killed in Iraq on June 4, will be held in Rustavi, a town just outside Tbilisi, on June 12.

His body was flown into Alekseevka aerodrome by a US Air Force aircraft over the weekend.

An official ceremony was held at the aerodrome, attended by Chief of Joint Staff Brigadier General Zaza Gogava as well as the US and British ambassadors.

The soldier’s family members also attended.

Kordzaia, 28, was killed by enemy fire while responding to the shelling of a checkpoint in Diyala province, northeast of Baghdad, a military spokesperson said.
(Prime News)

400-year-old olive tree planted in center of capital

A 400 year-old olive tree was planted alongside Rustaveli Avenue with the blessings of Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia Ilia II.

The tree was a gift to the Patriarch from Italy.

“This tree is a symbol of Georgia's prosperity,” the Patriarch said.
(Prime News)