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Compiled by Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, August 19
Zoo may be relocated

Sakartvelos Respublika reports that Tbilisi Zoo may be removed to a site near Tbilisi Lake. Nino Chachia, the Zoo’s Press Officer and Marketing Manager, has confirmed this, saying that the Zoo’s administration wants to buy new animals but insufficient space prevents them from doing so.

A final decision will be made by the Tbilisi Mayor in September. If he permits the relocation a tender will be announced. The present Zoo site will be kept as a green zone and no building work will take place there, stated Chachia.

New General Director wants to change GPB management structure

Kronika reports that newly appointed General Director Giorgi Chanturia is planning a serious structural reorganisation. He intends to replace Kubaneishvili’s vertical management system with a horizontal one which will give senior staff more independence.

Why does Chanturia consider this change may be beneficial? Eka Beselia of the Movement for United Georgia, suggests “Chanturia is expected to follow the same course as his predecessor. If he does, he will share the fate of Kubaneishvili.” Pikria Chikhradze, from New Rights, has stated that Chanturia’s appointment means that the National Movement has officially appropriated GPB.

Will Parliament adopt lustration law?

Akhali Taoba reports that MP Gia Tortladze has prepared a new lustration bill. The Strong Georgia party leader held a briefing about this on August 17, where he said, “For our national security we need to adopt a new lustration law. Former Communist security personnel mustn’t be appointed to high posts.” Tortladze hopes that Georgia’s citizens and Parliament will support his bill.

Asked whether the majority party agrees with it, Tortladze said that the new bill hasn’t yet been presented to Government members. Gia Tsagareishvili, an independent MP, has commented: “I am only interested in whether Tortladze has written this bill or Machavariani has helped him. If the Government has helped draft this bill this will have great importance when it is debated in Parliament.”

Farewell to rallies and demonstrations

Sakartvelos Respublika reports that on August 18 the new law “On Rallies and Demonstrations” came into force. The new law forbids the blocking off of public institutions and streets. If someone breaks this new law police are empowered to stop the demonstration, but not with lethal weapons. Administrative fines and terms of imprisonment for offences connected with demonstrations have also been increased.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs is obliged to prepare rules specifying in what circumstances non-lethal arms can be used within a month.