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Compiled by Messenger Staff
Monday, September 13
Dimitri Shashkin – next president?

In his interview with Akhali Taoba, analyst Lado Papava talked about the future president of Georgia and the current constitutional changes which will weaken the President's role.

Papava says that there will be several candidates for the presidency one of whom is David Bakradze, now chair of the parliament. “He will be one of the stronger candidates for several reasons. First of all, he is a high ranking official. He knows English perfectly, knows diplomatic relations very well, he is one of the most trusted figures in the national movement and finally he is not an object of irritation among the people. Maybe society does not love Bakradze but he is neither despised nor hated” Papava said.

“As for the second possible candidate Dimitri Shashkin (now minister of Education), I think he has less of a chance, however maybe Saakashvili is going to give him a better position before the adoption of the new constitution and grant him PM post. Shashkin is the best minister so far among the ministers appointed after the rose revolution. Besides his family name is also mentionable if we take into account our relations with Moscow currently. (Shashkin is a Russian family name) So, Shashkin is a very good ace to use in order to say that 'Look, we do not fight ethnic Russians, we appoint them in high ranking positions,” Papava commented on the question of who Saakashvili will choose: Bakradze or Shashkin. Papava answered that he does not see a better candidate today than Bakradze. As for Shashkin, he may become chair of parliament.

Burjanadze presented new members of the party

The leader of the Democratic movement-United Georgia, Nino Burjanadze, presented new members of her party and gave them their mandates, 24 Hours reports.

About 100 citizens were given the party’s mandates as they were candidates or party members until recently. They will move to a new office at which a presentation was held by Burjanadze on Friday.

Burjanadze expressed her gratitude towards each of the new members for their brave step to join her party. “When there is permanent pressure on our party members, you have made a brave decision. Just due to such people our party runs in a democratic and proper way of policy. Just those people like you will manage our country’s unification and democratic development,” Burjanadze stated.

National Forum talk about pressure

24 Hours write that National Forum member in Shida Kartli, Soso Vakhtangishvili, blames the Gori Municipality on pressuring his wife. As National Forum press service reports, Vakhtangishvili’s wife, who works in the ethnographic museum of Gori, was demanded to be dismissed from her job by head of Culture department of municipality Levan Shavliashvili.

”As it is known, the National Forum became very active in Kartli. During the summer time, Forum leaders were visiting different villages of Kartli and had meetings with locals. Such meetings are planned to be held in near future also. So, this has not escaped the authorities' attention who started pressuring our party members. I connect my wife’s dismissal to that particular reason, they want us to stop our activities,” Vakhtangishvili said.