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The News in Brief

Friday, December 9
Statement by co-rapporteurs on Georgia

The co-rapporteurs on Georgia of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), Kastriot Islami (Albania, SOC) and Michael Aastrup Jensen (Denmark, ALDE) expressed their concern at the presence of Russian polling stations in the breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

`The opening of polling stations on the territory of another state, Georgia, without the agreement of the de jure authorities is a violation of international law and runs counter to the August 2008 cease-fire agreement between Russia and Georgia,` the two co-rapporteurs said. (Rustavi 2)

Gilauri: Public will clearly see the results of healthcare reform

Georgian Prime Minister Nika Gilauri talked about reforms in the healthcare system at a governmental sitting.

He said the 10-point plan developed by government stipulates as one of the main priorities the healthcare.

"At the beginning of the month we declared that in this respect we will suggest many reforms to the public. The real results of the reforms are already visible. In the healthcare system we suggested a different approach to the public. This is a joint project with the state insurance system. The insurance system allows constructing new hospitals and clinics. The private sector as well played a role in this business," Gilauri said.

He reported that by the end of next year 150 new hospitals will open, 40 out of this number are already functioning. Gilauri said that at the end of December 30 more new hospitals will open. They are located mainly in the regions, but also in Tbilisi. (GHN)

Georgian FM takes part in GUAM Council of Foreign Ministers

A meeting of the GUAM Council of Foreign Ministers was held within the framework of the OSCE Ministerial in Vilnius, Lithuania on Wednesday.

The ministers discussed various issues concerning co-operation within GUAM, including the resolution of conflicts, co-operation with partner countries, prospects for further development, and interaction among GUAM countries within the framework of international organizations.

Georgian FM Grigol Vashadze held bilateral meetings with the Swiss president, Danish FM and representatives of the Irish delegation, the country which is expected to head OSCE from 2012.

A meeting between Japan and GUAM was held the same day, during which participants discussed various aspects of bilateral and multilateral co-operation in the fields of energy, transport, trade, investment and tourism; issues of common interest; as well as the question of the peaceful resolution of conflict based upon resolutions of the UN Security Council. Representatives from both sides expressed their wish to further improve co-operation between GUAM and Japan in various fields, and emphasized the importance of the need to intensify such co-operation. The next high-level GUAM-Japan meeting was also planned and a joint declaration was signed. (Rustavi 2)

Jioeva satisfied with negotiations with Russian official

The so-called president-elect of the occupied South Ossetia region, Alla Jioeva is satisfied with the negotiations conducted with the special representative of the Russian president Sergei Vinokurov regarding the `political crisis` in the breakaway region which developed after the presidential elections.

Jioeva has accepted the proposal of the Russian official according to which the position of the so-called interim president will be assumed temporarily by the current prime minister Vadim Brovtsev, because the term of the previous president Eduard Kokoity has already expired.

Despite the negotiations and agreement, Jioeva`s supporters are still organizing an inaugural ceremony for December 10th. (Rustavi 2)

House collapses in remote region

A house of the Putkaradze family collapsed suddenly in the village of Dghvani, Shuakhevi district of the Adjara region late Wednesday night. The experts say the collapse was caused by a cleft that was suddenly made in the ground under the basement of the house. The area where the house was built turns out to be seismically dangerous; the area was hit by a landslide last year.

The family members, including two children, were at home when the house began to collapse, but luckily, they all managed to get out safely.

The regional government will allocate temporary lodging for the family, but in the future, they will construct a new house. A special commission of experts, municipal authorities and geologists will explore the area soon. (Rustavi 2)

Kakha Baindurashvili visits India

"Taxes and unequality" is the title of a sixth international conference taking place in India, New Delhi. Kakha Baindurashvili, President of Georgian Trade Commercial Chamber is participating in this conference, alongside other representatives of different countries.

He is elected as a spokesperson at this conference. This denotes that the interest in Georgia of different countries' businessmen increased due to the successful reforms carried out in the country.

Baindurashvili made a special presentation about the investment possibilities in Georgia. What steps were made by government to reduce corruption, create a favorable taxation system, simplify services and create an open policy door for FDI. As a result today Georgia, according to Baindurashvili, is one of the freest and transparent countries in terms of different regulations.

He also conducted negotiations on business relations of Georgian businessmen in India. (GHN)