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The News in Brief

Monday, November 21
Georgia and US Examine Military Cooperation Issues

Vano Merabishvili, the Interior Minister of Georgia, and Ray Maybas, the US Secretary of the Navy, yesterday examined coastguard cooperation issues. The meeting was held at the Office of the Interior Ministry behind closed doors.

The question discussed was on the development of bilateral cooperation and security issues, Vano Merabishvili told journalists after the meeting.

"While different divisions of the Interior Ministry are financed from the state budget, the Georgian coastguard service receives substantial financial aid by the United States," he said.

Merabishvili said Georgia will enjoy US assistance to install radar systems to control its space fully.

In addition, the two sides explored the opportunity of closer cooperation in the field of prevention of sea smuggling of arms, drugs, and weapons of mass destruction, the Georgian Interior chief said.

The US Secretary of the Navy underscored relations between Georgia and the US and said US and Georgian military are trained together and serve in Afghanistan hand in hand.

"Our and Georgian naval infantrymen serve jointly in the Afghani province of Helmand and show their best," he said.

The US Secretary of the Navy also noted that US warships will continue to arrive in the Black Sea to carry out military training jointly with Georgia's coastguard ships.

"Georgia is a good partner of America so the cooperation, including the military one should get stronger," he noted.

Georgian-Armenian Economic Intergovernmental Commission Session held in Batumi

Georgian-Armenian Economic Cooperation intergovernmental commission session was held in Batumi.

Prime Minister’s press service informs that Nika Gialuri met with Prime Minister of Armenian republic Tigran Sargsian. After the meeting, Georgian Prime Minister mentioned that Armenia is one of the main partners of Georgia.

“Trade turnover increased by 40% between Georgia and Armenia. The largest number of tourists arrives in Georgia from Armenia. We have significant political-economic relations. On the meeting, we discussed energy projects, perspectives of transit, transport”, Nika Gilauri said.

After the plenary session, ceremony of signing Georgian-Armenian joint intergovernmental economic commission protocol was held.

Georgian Wine Institute opens in Kakheti Region

Georgian Wine Institute opened in the village of Tsinandali of Kakheti Region in Eastern Georgia today. Georgian president opened the new institute in a solemn ceremony.

The establishment of the wine institute was proposed by Mikheil Saakashvili. The project was implemented by the Silk Road Group and with the assistance of the Agriculture Ministry of Georgia.

The new institute is expected to offer new Master`s programs to students from the next year.

Students over 15 years old will be able to enter the wine institute, which is expected to assist in the training of professional winemakers in the future.
(Rustavi 2)

Georgian, Armenian, Russian citizens detained in France

A major operation conducted Friday by more than 300 police officers led to the arrests in Paris and in the south-west France of a network of 23 people accused of theft, receiving stolen goods and money laundering committed by an organized crime gang.

Local media reports that among the detainees are citizens of Georgia, Armenia and Russia.

The crime gang members were arrested in connection with a judicial investigation following an increase in theft and burglary at business premises and private residences for several months in different regions of southwest France.

As reported, the crime gang, which was engaged in theft of cash, jewellery and digital equipments, used a network of receivers of Armenian nationality, the profits being systematically routed to the Caucasus.

Names of the detainees are kept confidential. They are expected to be brought before court in the near future.
(Rustavi 2)

Pardon commission assembles to discuss 300 cases

State Pardon Commission will assemble today to discuss the cases of about 300 convicts for the Saint Giorgi Day Pardon. Among them are the cases of 11 minors and 35 women convicts. The members of the commission say the pardon will refer to those who are serving their sentences for light or less grave crimes. The commission will discuss all 300 cases, but will approve only several dozens, which will be sent to the president as recommendations. The pardoned prisoners will be released on November 23, 2011.
(Rustavi 2)