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Compiled by Liana Bezhanishvili
Friday, January 29
Ramaz Klimiashvili calls for broad discussions at the Foreign Ministry

Rezonansi reports that political scientist Ramaz Klimiashvili attended the conference on Georgia's foreign policy organised by the Movement for Fair Georgia. He says the meeting was useful but he expected more opposition parties to attend.

"Very serious issues were discussed at this meeting, but although opposition and Government representatives were invited no one came from the Government, of course, and only the Conservatives and People’s Party leaders from the opposition. However analysts were there and journalists who recorded the meeting till the end.

"Criticism of both Government and opposition was made and the issue of dialogue with Russia discussed. Zurab Noghaideli did not say anything himself, he was interested in the views of the analysts. I think that the Government and Saakashvili have forgotten about restoring the country’s territorial integrity.

"It seems that the Foreign Ministry is now more interested in what political scientists and experts think about the country’s foreign policy course. But it has its own experts and listens to their opinions. It would be better to hold such meetings in the Foreign Ministry," stated Ramaz Klimiashvili.

Defend Georgia wants a public meeting to decide how Georgia should develop

Akhali Taoba writes that several months ago the Defend Georgia Movemnent was created by well-known figures including Levan Gachechiladze and the writer Chabua Amirejibi, who gave it its name. Its members gathered at the writer’s house on Wednesday and made a statement to the Georgian nation.

Defend Georgia says that it is time the public began to think about the country’s development. One part of the Georgian public considers that it is the time that the whole population analyses the present situation and forms an agreed concept of democratic development acceptable to all. The movement intends to invite representatives of all parties and institutions to a public meeting in order to facilitate this process.

No political parties sent representatives to the meeting at Amirejibi's house. However Defend Georgia believs most people will respond to its initiative.

Sandro Girgvliani’s hearing put off

Kvela Siakhle states that the hearing into the Sandro Girgvliani case in the Strasbourg human rights court has been put off for a second time. According to the opposition this is because the Georgian Government is trying to prevent the case being heard until the local government elections are over.

Shalva Shavgulidze, Girgvliani’s advocate, states that an oral hearing was scheduled for 2 February but subsequently put off by the Georgian Government. Georgia's representative in the European Court, judge Nona Tsotsoria stated that she would not be attending. The Georgian Government technically had one week in which to nominate a judge for this hearing but it subsequently demanded one month, which is also allowed by the court regulations in certain circumstances. The court complied with this request and must now present the new judge by 12 February.