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The News in Brief

Thursday, October 16
Mikheil Saakashvili participates in meeting of leaders of European People’s Party

On October 15 a meeting of Heads of State and Government who belong to member parties of the European People’s Party was held in Brussels.

President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso, Chairman of the European Parliament Hanse-Gert Pottering, Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel, Prime Minister of Italy Silvio Berlusconi, Premier of Belgium Yves Leterme, Premier of Poland Donald Tusk, President of Romania Traian Basescu, Prime Minister of the Ukraine Yulia Timoshenko and President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili were due to participate in the meeting, to be chaired by President of the European People’s Party Wilfried Martens.

Bilateral meetings between President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili and other participants in the meeting were also planned. (Black Sea Press)

Georgian authorities hope for OSCE assistance in resolving Gali teacher problem

The Minister of Education of the legitimate Government of the Abkhaz Autonomous Republic in Exile, Alexander Aplakov, hopes for the assistance of OSCE representatives in resolving the problem of Georgian teachers in the Gali region of Abkhazia, Black Sea Press was told on October 15.

On Tuesday the Minister held a meeting with representatives of the High Commissioner for National Minorities of the OSCE and told him about problems in the education sphere in the region. The meeting was held in Tbilisi within the framework of the visit of OSCE representatives to Georgia which began a week ago.

According to Aplakov, the situation in Gali region is very complicated. Block posts have been established in the grounds of schools, the hours of teaching the Georgian language have been reduced in some schools, two teachers of the Georgian language have been withdrawn from the salary list and two teachers are no longer permitted to teach children because they expressed dissatisfaction with the existing situation at a meeting with UN representatives.

Today OSCE representatives will visit Abkhazia and familiarize themselves personally with the situation there. “We hope the situation will change after their visit. They will return to Tbilisi on October 24 and report,” Aplakov said. (Black Sea Press)

Latvia proposes NATO meeting about Georgia in Riga

The Defence Ministry of Latvia has presented NATO member states with a proposal to hold a meeting in Riga, which would discuss various means of providing assistance to Georgia, the RIA Novosti agency informs. However, the Ministry says that no one has responded as yet.

Latvia supported Georgia during the conflict with Russia in August. The Latvian Seim passed a declaration condemning Russia’s actions. Latvia has also sent humanitarian aid to Georgia. (Black Sea Press)

Georgian post fired at from Abkhaz side

On the night of October 15 the Georgian police post 600 meters from the bridge across the Inguri river was fired at from the village of Chuburkhinji in the Gali region of Abkhazia, said Governor of Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti Zaza Gorozia, speaking to journalists. Although there were no casualties the Governor claimed that the shooting was a provocation.

“At approximately 22.00 there were four shots. The post was situated near the bridge across the Inguri river. This is provocation and they think we will yield to it,” Gorozia said. “All police subunits are in a state of readiness, we are ready for anything and there are no grounds for panic,” he added, in a statement broadcast on Rustavi-2.

According to the TV company, the shooting was carried out by people with grenade launchers at the 201st Russian block post.