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The News in Brief

Friday, January 23
Mikheil Saakashvili to respond to peopleís questions on air

Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili will respond to questions posed by the population on air today. According to Presidentís Press Centre more than 500 questions have been sent in and registered.

Anyone who wants to send in a question can do so via the Public Broadcasterís website, which contains a preview indicating a website through which the questions can be sent. The Presidentís question and answer session will start at 15:00 and will last for three hours. (The Messenger)

Paata Davitaia holds briefing about Inter-Rao

Paata Davitaia, the Deputy Chairman of Parliament, declared at a press briefing on January 21 that the negotiations between the Abkhazian de facto authorities and Russian company Inter-Rao are a conspiracy against the Georgian State.

Davitaia presented a schedule which states that the Enguri Hydroelectric Power Station will be registered in Sokhumi. Under an agreement between the Abkhaz Chernomor-Energo and Inter-Rao Abkhazia is to receive about 1 milliard kilowatts of power free of charge. Abkhazia does not need that much power, and the residue will be sold in Russia to line the pockets of the separatists.

In order to execution the planned conspiracy, Georgian power specialists working in the Enguri Hydroelectric Power Station in the village of Saberio will be oppressed, says Davitaia. "According to the Abkhazian side itself, Georgian power specialists will be replaced by Russian power specialists,Ē he said.

Davitaia maintains that measures in this direction are already being taken. Russian tanks are in Saberio and its perimeter is controlled by the Russian armed forces as well. (The Messenger)

47 soldiers identified via DNA analysis

The National Bureau of Court Expertise has identified 47 unknown soldiers via DNA analysis. The genetic codes of the soldiers, who died during the Russian occupation, and their parents have been compared in a laboratory. Eight more corpses have not yet been identified.

Nino Kandelaki, who is in charge of the office in the Defence Ministry which helps families find the corpses of dead soldiers, has identified her husband via this DNA analysis. Erekle Kurashvili, the head of the 4th Brigade Artillery Division, died during the air attack near Tskhinvali on August 8. The Russians buried his corpse with those of other soldiers.

The office is waiting for new results of DNA analyses. Seventeen soldiers are still considered lost, and the bodies of several of these have not been found. Gela Berdzenishvili, the Deputy Defence Minister, has announced that if any of the soldiers is identified his family will receive 15,000 GEL as a one-off assistance payment.

A fraternal cemetery for soldiers who died during the Russian-Georgian war will be built in the village of Mukhatgverdi, where more than forty officers have already been buried. A contest to design the cemetery has already begun. A memorial to the dead heroes will also be built in Mukhatgverdi and a signboard was erected there yesterday. (Rustavi 2)

Triplets born in Adjara

Triplets have been born in Batumi maternity hospital in the Adjara Region. Two boys and one girl were born by caesarean section to the Khabazi family. Eka Davitadze, 22, the mother, is a twin herself.

The infants have been placed in an incubator and their health condition is stable. This is the third instance of triplets in Adjara in the last five years. (Rustavi 2)