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The News in Brief

Tuesday, April 17
Historical Construction starts on Makhata Hill on 17 April

The historical construction of St. Iveria Virgin Mary Temple starts on Makhata Hill on 17 April. Catholicos-Patriarch of Georgia, Ilia the Second, will deliver a church service on this day, and there will be a ground-breaking of the land for the temple's Altar.

Remains from holy places of the world and Georgian eparchies will be laid in the foundation of the temple.

People from 38 eparchies of Georgia will arrive to participate in the construction. They will bring stones with the blessing of the Patriarch that bear prayers and names of their family members or people loved by them. The stones will also be laid in the temple's foundation.

Angia the foretellerís icon, painted with the blessing of the Patriarch, will be placed in the temple, as the St Iveria Virgin Mary Temple's patron.

Founder of the Iavnana foundation, Paata Burtchuladze, will also take part in the ceremony, and will lead the construction of the temple with the blessing of Patriarch Ilia the Second.

The temple will be built by the public and Georgian emigrates. 145,000 people are already involved in this public project. A Book of The Dead and Living will be created for the names of all the Georgians who will help in the building of the temple.

The participants of the St Iveria Virgin Mary Temple project can see their names on the web page for the foundation;

If you would like to make a donation to the project, you can call: 0901 77 77 77 and speak to the phone operator (donations start at 1 GEL a month).

Grigiol Vashadze met with Slovak counterpart in Bratislava

Georgian Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze met with his Slovak counterpart, Miroslav Lajcak in Bratislava on Thursday, for discussions on enhancement of bilateral and multi-lateral relations between the two countries.

The NATO Chicago summit 2012, cooperation with the ISAF mission, and the need for continued cooperation in maintaining political stability and economic development in Afghanistan after 2014 were the main topics of discussion.

Regional issues and cooperation in regional security issues were also on the agenda.

Lajcak also announced Slovakia's decision to issue Georgian citizens Slovak visas from it's embassy in Tbilisi from April 27th this year. To date, Georgians could only apply for Slovakian visas at consulates in Ankara and Kiev.
(Rustavi 2)

Construction of several hydro power stations underway in Georgia

Construction of several hydro power stations is underway in Georgia, with President Saakashvili visiting the Dariali and Larsi hydro power stations sites.

Starting last year, construction of the hydro power stations is expected to finish in 2013-2014.

Several hundreds of people are employed at the construction, and Saakashvili joined them, symbolically taking part in the construction of a tunnel.

The project is being carried out with a 20-million investment. The stations are expected to generate 98 million kilowatts per hour yearly.
(Rustavi 2)

President Saakashvili opens Public Service hall in Ozurgeti

The fifth Public Service hall of Georgia was officially opened by Georgia's President, Mikheil Saakashvili in Ozurgeti, in the Guria Region of Western Georgia.

Saakashvili inspected the new building and talked to its young architects.

The building meets all contemporary standards. The Public Service hall has also assumed a new function, with The School of Leaders using it to re-train young people in the region.

Saakashvili addressed the locals of Ozurgeti, saying the new Public Service hall and the new hospital in town meant less travel and time would be needed when accessing these services.

Saakashvili said the central district of Ozurgeti, and the resorts of the Guria Region would soon begin being reconstructed.
(Rustavi 2)

Saakashvili and Government members arrive in Guria to attend traditional game

The President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili and his family attended a game of Leloburti, a traditional Georgian folk sport in the village of Shukhuti [Guria region] with other members of Government during Easter.

Tourists in the village also watched the game, 300 people were participants of the game, a tradition observed in Guria every Easter since the 18th century.

Saakashvili and family visited the Imnaishvili family in the town of Lanvhkhuti, Guria to wish them a Happy Easter and give presents.

Lelo or Leloburti (meaning literally in Georgian "Field Ball") is a Georgian folk sport, very similar to rugby. Today within Georgian rugby union terminology, the word Lelo is used to mean a try, and the popularity of rugby union in Georgia has also been attributed to the sport.

Lelo was played in Georgia from ancient times and is still played on occasions in rural areas.
(Rustavi 2)

Archaeological diggings begin in Khovlegora

Archaeological diggings have begun in the Kaspi region village of Khovle - Georgian and foreign scientists will study already explored and yet untouched areas of the four hectares of territory. Scientists say the discovery dates back to the VI century AD.

The last excavations carried out in Khovle were in seventies of the last century, but archaeologists on this dig have discovered oldest bread making construction, called a `tonne`, clay dish making equipment, unique constructions, chapels and workshops - the ancient city was surrounded with a high stone fence with the clay sculptures of horses and Aries.

Archeologists explain this is the first discovery around the world, where 1,100 history is represented without gaps in the transitional period from Bronze Age to Iron Age, which is the most important epoch of the development of mankind.

The discovery has been granted international recognition - Austrian scientists will arrive in Georgia soon to join the second phase of exploration.
(Rustavi 2)

Georgian athlete wins 85kg Weightlifting European Championship

Georgian athlete Raul Tsirekidze (85kg) took out the gold medal at the European Weightlifting Championship, which is underway in the city of Antalya, Turkey.

In his first attempt, Tsirekidze lifted 160, 163 and 165 kg barbell and was behind Turkish weightlifter Fatih Baydar, who snatched 166kg. Raul won silver medal in the clean and jerk event, where he lifted 193, 196 and 200 kg barbell. German Tom Schwarzbach took gold in this event.

In total Tsirekidze gathered 365 kg, taking the gold medal, Baydar took the silver medal (259kg) and Romanian Gabriel Sancraian won the bronze.

Vano Grikurov, head coach of Georgia's National team is expected to name three Georgian sportsmen who will participate in the forthcoming London Olympics.
(Rustavi 2)