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The News in Brief

Friday, April 16
Georgian Deputies are in Afghanistan

Chair of the Georgian Parliament Davit Bakradze was yesterday in Afghanistan at the head of a Parliament delegation which spent a day with Georgian troops at their base.

Bakradze said that the goal of the visit was to demonstrate support for Georgian soldiers. "It is the duty of politicians to stand morally and physically by the soldiers who are serving in Afghanistan. With this in mind, we decided to come to Afghanistan and spend one day in the same conditions our soldiers have to live in for months. We’ll symbolically meet all those problems and dangers which they face during the mission together. By this act, we will demonstrate our attitude to their mission; we will demonstrate our respect for their service in such difficult conditions," Bakradze said.

Bakradze flew to Afghanistan at dawn yesterday. Leader of the Parliamentary majority Petre Tsiskarishvili, Deputy Chair of the Defence and Security Committee of Parliament Soso Kutateladze, minority leader Giorgi Targamadze and Chair of the faction Strong Georgia Gia Tortladze were the other members of the delegation. (Interpressnews)

OSCE Monitoring Mission to work in Georgia

The OSCE monitoring mission started work in Georgia yesterday. Nino Kalandadze, Deputy Foreign Minister of Georgia, made the corresponding statement at a briefing.

Kalandadze said that the mission will monitor election processes and the post-election period. "The monitoring mission members will meet officials and NGOs. It is very important to show the world that Georgia holds democratic elections," Nino Kalaldadze said. (Interpressnews)

Opposition meet political experts and diplomats

One of the leaders of the National Council, a union of several opposition parties, has met foreign diplomats in Georgia and political experts to introduce their four basic demands before the local elections.

Kakha Kukava said that the opposition was demanding the election of district election commission members from parties on the parity principle; the installation of video cameras in each polling station; the control of the expenditure of municipal funds by municipal officials and the investigation of all oppression of opposition activists. He also reported procedural irregularities and specific cases of oppression of members of opposition parties and complained that the CEC had ignored their reports of violations.

The National Council called upon the international community to respond to all violations. (Rustavi 2)

Guards to provide secure study at school

Guards were introduced in 7 pilot schools in Tbilisi 7 on April 15 and began to perform their duties. They are working in the first experimental school and public schools 11, 23, 24, 51, 52 and 117.

Minister of Education and Science Dimitri Shashkin and Rector of the Academy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Khatuna Dekanoidze personally introduced the guards and explained the new initiative to teachers, schoolchildren and parents of public school 117. The guards talked about their work and answered questions from the hall as well. The Deputy Ministers and other leading officials of the Ministry introduced the guards to the other six schools.

Each group of guards contains 2 men and one woman who have passed the Safe School training course. They have fully developed the skills to prevent conflict and crime and provide schoolchildren with any kind of help. They have no right to impose punishment and are obliged to ensure the security of the children.

The goal of the new initiative is to ensure the safety of schoolchildren during the educational process. (Rustavi 2)

Man dies in fire in Tbilisi

48 year-old Vazha Bedoshvili died in a fire in the Dighomi district of Tbilisi yesterday. The tragedy occurred in the 18th block of the third quartile of the district.

The fire broke out in an apartment on the seventh floor at midday. The causes of the fire are not yet known, however eyewitnesses think that the man was drunk and he fell on a gas cooker. (Rustavi 2)

Flat given to family of Lieutenant who died in August War

The family of a war victim has been given a flat by the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Lieutenant Davit Avaliani, who died in the August war in 2008, had a wife and small children.

Governor of the Isani Samgori district Temur Grigalashvili handed over computers and other household items to the family on presenting them with the flat. (Interpressnews)

Lawyer arrested for extortion

Lawyer Lela Abashmadze has been arrested on suspicion of extortion. According to the Main Prosecutor`s Office the lawyer demanded 3,000 GEL from the family of her defendant for conducting a successful defence and obtaining their release thanks to her contacts with senior authorities. Abashmadze told the family of Archil Vashakmadze that she was going to hand over this money to that official. The lawyer had already extorted 600 GEL from the defendant`s family.

The lawyer is in custody. She may face from four to seven years in prison if found guilty. (Rustavi 2)