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The News in Brief

Monday, October 24
US Ambassador: US Continues to Support Georgian Democracy

The US supports the people of Georgia in their ongoing efforts to strengthen their democracy, to improve and strengthen democratic institutions and to increase the legitimacy of the Georgian government in society. The US Ambassador to Georgia John Bass told The Messenger: "we do not support a particular individual or a particular party, we work with parties across the political spectrum, the only area where we will not work with people is if they are advocating violence or extra legal overthrow of the government. Now within that context, looking ahead to next year’s parliamentary elections and presidential elections, we believe it is very important that the campaigning environment, the electoral playing field if you will, be more competitive and ensure that it provides equal opportunities to all candidates to compete for the votes and support of the citizens of this country. Mr. Ivanishvili is a relative newcomer to politics in Georgia, he has made serious allegations and it was interesting to hear from him and we will take what he said and study it carefully and discuss it. But I think what is most important going forward is that the people of this country have an opportunity to hear directly from Mr. Ivanishvili rather than from someone like me."
(The Messenger)

Ilia the Second’s Letter to Turkish Government Discussed

Georgian Patriarch Ilia II's letter to the Turkish government is being discussed, Ilia II declared this fact during the church service at St. Trinity church Sunday. He says that Georgian monasteries and churches in Turkey is a very significant issue for Georgia.

“As is known, the government of Turkey gave an order to give the temples located in Turkey to the nations to whom they belong. They have been given to Greece, Armenia, Russia, though not to us. I sent a letter to the Prime Minister of Turkey and we are asking to give the temples in Oshki, Kakhuli and other monasteries to Georgia. They responded that the letter was being discussed. I gave the task to the ambassador and consul to give special attention to the issue”, patriarch said, and voiced hope that the issue will be positively resolved.

Archaeological Project Launched in Mtskheta

The National Agency of Cultural Heritage Preservation of Georgia has undertaken a new project, which aims to assist development of archaeological tourism in the country.

Guests have been invited to the town of Mtskheta some 30 kilometers from Tbilisi to inspect well-known historic monuments as well as the restored Bagineti and Samtavro archaeological valleys there. Tourism infrastructure has already been developed in the district.

Mtskheta is the first town the National Agency of Cultural Heritage Preservation is carrying out the new project in.

Later, the project is expected to continue in the regions, which are distinguished by their archaeological monuments.

As reported, all the archaeological monuments so far unknown to the public will be included in the new tourist guidebooks to be published in the future.
(Rustavi 2)

Day of Georgian Wine in Israel

The Georgian Embassy organized day of Georgian wine in Israel on Sunday. Director of the national investment agency of Georgia Keti Bochorishvili and head of export assistance service Gvantsa Meladze took part in the event.

The aim of the visit was to show the export potential of Georgian wine. The agency presented the products of Georgian companies: Tbilghvino, Shato Mukhrani, Kakheti’s Traditional Wine Makers and Bagrationi.

Demand for Georgian alcoholic beverages in Israeli is large.

The local traders, decision makers in the alcoholic beverage business, retail and wholesale trade network representatives were invited to the day of Georgian wine.

Director of the agency, Keti Bochorishvili will introduce the possibilities of developing trade relations between the two countries.

In 2011, the export assistance service of the investment agency focuses on promoting Georgian alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage in Asia and near East markets. The Day of Georgian Wine is held in the framework of this program.

Ivanishvili’s Board of Advisors Departs to Brussels

A member of Ivanishvili’s board of advisors, Irakli Sesiashvili, and his lawyer Eka Beselia departed to Brussels. Sesiashvili told InterPressNews before departure that meetings with members of the European Parliament are planned in the framework of the visit.

Sesiashvili explained that the low level of democracy in Georgia and Bidzina Ivanishvili’s political plans will be discussed.

The visit of members of Ivanishvili’s board of advisors and lawyer in Brussles will last till 27 October.

Makhniashvili to be sentenced in December

Vakhtang Makhniashvili will be sentenced in December for two separate stabbing attacks that wounded three people.

Makhniashvili, whose daughter Mariam disappeared more than two years ago, pleaded guilty in May to three counts of aggravated assault in Canada.

On Thursday his victims were in court to describe how their lives had been affected by the attacks.

All said they still feel anxious and fearful. Among them is a couple who had helped Makhniashvili to secure bail after the first incident.

In an earlier case Makhniashvili stabbed a former neighbor in May 2010.

On Thursday, the 26-year-old victim told the court Makhniashvili blamed him for Mariam`s disappearance.

According to a psychiatric report, Makhniashvili suffers from a type of delusional disorder. The report also says his daughter`s disappearance likely contributed to his violent behaviour.
(Rustavi 2)