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The News in Brief

Thursday, February 24
Parliamentary Opposition Meets Jean Louis Loran, Director General of Political Affairs and Democracy of Council of Europe

The domestic policy of Georgia, democratic processes, the electoral code and the developments in the occupied territories of Georgia were discussed at yesterday’s meeting between the parliamentary opposition and Louis Loran, Director General of Political Affairs and Democracy of the Council of Europe.

Giorgi Targamadze, Guram Chakhvadze and Paata Davitaia participated in the closed meeting.

One of the main topics of the meeting was the reform of the election system. According to Giorgi Targamadze, the leader of the parliamentary minority, 2011 will be a decisive year. He said ‘the national interest of Georgia is to become part of the European system and bring the social state of the country close to European standards. All this will be achieved through conduction of fair elections in the country’.

According to Guram Chakhvadze, the responsibility lies with the majority and the government. According to him, the Venice Commission and the Council of Europe will continue monitoring the works on the election code.

Paata Davitaia, the opposition Vice-Speaker emphasized the population census on the occupied territories. According to him, this process in Abkhazia should not take place without the Georgian population. "Yesterday the population census commenced in Abkhazia. This is one more piece of evidence of ethnic cleansing, because it is conducted without Georgians and other ethnic groups, who are now IDPs ", - Davitaia stated.

As the legislators noted, the meeting with the delegation of the Council of Europe had great importance, as long as they permanently monitor the domestic situation of Georgia and democratic institutions of the country. (Interpressnews)

Deputy Secretary Of State to Arrive In Georgia Together With Philip Gordon

Along with Deputy Secretary of State James B. Steinberg, the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Philip Gordon will visit Georgia.

James Steinberg and Philip Gordon will visit Georgia on February 24.

As Prime-News was told at the US embassy to Georgia, the delegation members will hold meetings with Presidrent of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili and other officials.

A wide range of issues including biletaral cooperation and regional security issues will be discussed at the meetings. A round table meeting with the participation of civil society representatives will also be held.

After visiting Georgia, the delegation will leave for Bosnia and Albania.

The diplomats visit to Georgia is part of their Caucasian tour. (Prime-News)

Georgia still Obstacle in Russia’s Affiliation with WTO

The Russian government says negotiations over affiliation with WTO will end in the summer.

The Russian authorities name Georgia as the main obstacle for affiliation.

‘Despite certain obstacles we hope the negotiations will end in summer. Georgia remains the main problem’, Yuri Ushakov, Vladimir Putin's deputy chief of staff said.

The above-mentioned issue will be discussed during Dmitry Medvedev’s visit to Belgium on 23-24 February.

‘The EU’s clear support is necessary, since the organization is the main player’, Yuri Ushakov said. (Interpressnews)

Energy Minister met with representatives of energy companies

Energy Minister Aleksandre Khetaguri said at the meeting with the representatives of energy companies operating in Georgia, that every subscriber would receive electricity vouchers of 20 GEL within the governmental program of social assistance. He said 85% of vouchers had already been distributed throughout the country.

In addition, the minister has ordered to give recommendations to the employees of business centers on how to solve the problems connected with the process of voucher distribution. The process will last until March 15, 2011 and the additional lists of the subscribers would also be printed to provide effective completion of the social program. (Rustavi 2)

Illegal child adoption revealed

Kakheti Regional Police division has arrested people suspected of the illegal adoption of a child. Khatuna Bezhitaishvili, mother of the child, Eliso Mghebrishvili, the doctor of the Sagarejo polyclinic, adopter Ana Genishi and Nunu Tediashvili were all detained.

The investigation has revealed that Nunu Tediashvili organized contact between the mother of the child, along with the employee of the polyclinic Eliso Mghebrishvili, who in her turn contacted with Ana Genish, who was registered at the polyclinic as the mother expecting the child at the women’s consultation centre of the clinic. On December 18, 2010, Khatuna Bezhitashvili gave birth to the child with the ID of Ana Genish.

The adopter forged her ID documents by inserting her picture in the ID of Bezhitashvili and took a forged birth certificate of the child, who was registered as Elene Genish.

The child was with the adopting mother after being discharged from the maternity house.

The investigation is in progress under the article of N171 and 362, which stipulates imprisonment for 3-5 years. (Rustavi 2)

Georgian Fashion Week to be Held in Tbilisi in March

The third Georgian Fashion Week will be held in Tbilisi between March 31-April 3.

The event will be organized by Maka Metreveli, spouse of the Chairman of the Parliament of Georgia.

A news conference will be held concerning the preparation for the Fashion Week at 17:30 on 24 February. (Interpressnews)