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Complied by Liana Bezhanishvili
Friday, November 13
Salome Zourabichvili: The opposition should unite behind Alasania without holding primaries

Kvela Siakhle writes that the Leader of The Way of Georgia Salome Zourabichvili has said: “The way out of the current political situation is to develop democracy in the country. Today others are using our difficult situation to further their own political ends. In spite of thinking about how to end confrontation and carry out reforms we also think about how the situation is escalating.

“We found a way to change the Government [by force] but rejected it. After this people believed the Government’s propaganda that it is more powerful than we are and we have been defeated. But this is not so. For three months we expressed a huge protest.

“Today the main tactic is protest. We cannot talk about revolution in this weak country. There is another way, continual peaceful resistance. We must neither agree with the Government nor start a revolution.

“It is necessary for the opposition to be united. Trust me, there is no other way except to unite against the Saakashvili regime.”

“I think nothing will change as a result of the forthcoming local elections, but if the situation has not changed by then we will contest them. But the opposition must be united against the Government and have only one candidate. Maybe a primary election is therefore justified but I am not a great fan of these. I suggest that the opposition should support Irakli Alasania without holding any primaries and see what happens,” Zourabichvili said.

7,300 Moslems will return to Georgia

Rezonansi reports that the deadline for Moslem Meskhs exiled in 1944 collecting the necessary documentation so that they can return to Georgia has been prolonged. The original deadline was 1 January 2010. MPs Akaki Minashvili, Irakli Kavtaradze, Giorgi Kandelaki and Chiora Taktakishvili have prepared the necessary amendments which extend the deadline to 1 April. Georgia is likely to resettle nearly 7,300 Meskhs.

On 22 June 2007 the Georgian Parliament passed a resolution about the repatriation of Moslems whom the Soviet State exiled from Southern Georgia in 1944. It stated that those who want to return must show Soviet documentation confirming that they had been exiled in that year.

“The official date when the receipt of applications stops is 1 January. Some people who approached us through different organisations asked us for more time. We reiterate however that applications must be made in English or Georgian. Meskhs living in Russia have said that Putin told them that their application can be written in Russian but we do not accept Russian language documents without a translation,” stated Chairperson of the Human Rights and Civil Integration Committee of the Georgian Parliament Elene Tevdoradze.