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Complied by Liana Bezhanishvili
Friday, December 4
Alasania will stand for Mayor whatever the threshold is

In an interview with Rezonansi the Leader of the Alliance for Georgia Irakli Alasania has stated: "Our strategy at this point is to meet people and listen to their views about today’s political situation. The public sees that changes are necessary and that applying a 50 percent threshold is the just way to choose the Mayor of Tbilisi. I am sure that the public will become more vocal about this. But of course the threshold is not the only demand. Other elements must also be put in place in order to hold just elections.

"The planned local elections are a referendum on Georgia's democracy. I think that political forces must not remain outside this process. Consultations are continuing with different political forces in order to bring our positions into greater agreement. My party and I think that there is no alternative to elections as a means of changing the Government,” stated Alasania.

“The Government left the negotiation process unilaterally and then took its election barrier proposal to Parliament. I think that trying to pass the law in this form will continue but we have the right to demand that it is changed. We are not going to stop the law being passed in this form but if the public declare loudly that they will not accept it this demand might be successful in future.

"I do not exclude holding demonstrations to make the public's view known. The struggle for the 50% threshold will continue but if there is no democratic will these elections will not be successful in the eyes of the international community and our public would also think that elections serve no purpose. Our interest as an alliance is to hold normal elections to make the public the guardians of democracy,” continued Alasania.

Asked whether he might reconsider running in the Mayoral elections, Alasania said: "I will state directly that we are not afraid of the barrier. If 50% is not introduced now we will do it later so that the capital has a Mayor chosen by the majority."

Parliament decreases its budget again

Alia reports that Parliament has decreased the size of its budget by a further three million. Chairman of the Parliamentary Finance and Budget Committee Zurab Melikishvili is holding consultations with Finance Minister Baindurashvili about Parliamentary expenditure and other issues.

It is believed that the budget for Parliament will be decreased by approximately 2.8 million. There will be an official announcement on Friday at the plenary meeting. Parliament has already cut its budget once this year.

Alexander Shalamberidze begins to collect signatures

Akhali Taoba writes that MP Alexander Shalamberidze, who still sits with the National Movement, has begun to collect signatures on a petition to establish a 50% threshold for the Tbilisi Mayor elections.

Yesterday Shalamberidze asked Parliament Chairman Davit Bakradze to increase the barrier for election in first past the post single member contests to 50 percent. Shalamberidze needs to obtain 30,000 signatures to present the corresponding legislative initiative in Parliament.