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The News in Brief

Monday, May 28
Papuna Davitaia responds to Serbian President’s statement

State Minister for Diaspora Issues, Papuna Davitaia, has responded to the Serbian President’s statement regarding possible recognition of the occupied territories.

"Serbia is a democratic country and I do not think it will make a decision on the recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia,” said Davitaia. Serbia may consider an issue of recognition of the independence of Abkhazia and the so-called South Ossetia, Serbian President Tomislav Nikolich told Russian Radio Echo of Moscow. A journalist asked the president a question regarding Abkhazia and South Ossetia when he was talking about the situation in Kosovo. The journalist became interested whether the president was going to recognize the above-mentioned regions.

‘These are different situations, different conditions. The whole world knows that the situation is quite different. So we cannot use the same principles in Kosovo and in Abkhazia. We will discuss the issue in the parliament,” the Serbian President said.

International community offers assistance to Georgia

The international community has offered assistance to Georgia, but we need a different kind of assistance. Georgia has been facing great challenges for the last centuries, Archbishop Iakob said in the Sunday sermon at the Trinity Cathedral.“The world left Georgia in front of Russia in the previous centuries. In the late 80s we were trying to become honorable members of the world community. We were demanding that the world protect us from Russian aggression after the collapse of the Soviet Union. When Russia was busy with other business and paid less attention to Georgia, it was possible that the international community would accept us in NATO or the EU. That would prevent us from the violation of our territorial integrity,” the archbishop said.

According to the archbishop, Georgia was once again left alone in front of Russia. As a result, we have temporarily lost Abkhazia and Samachablo; many of people have been internally displaced.

The archbishop also recalled the event held by the sexual minorities in Tbilisi and noted that the West criticized Georgia for violating the rights of sexual minorities. According to the archbishop, immorality is unacceptable for any religion.

‘We needed a different kind of assistance. Nobody suppresses homosexuals but their propaganda is unacceptable. If the international community wants to help us, it should help us in the restoration of territorial integrity. For this they should not just express their sorrow, but take active measures,” the archbishop said.

Georgia`s Independence Day marked in Rome, Kiev

May 26, Georgia’s Independence Day, was marked in Rome, Italy on Saturday. Representatives of the Georgian Diaspora assembled at a meeting organized by the Georgian Embassy. Representatives of the Italian authorities were invited to the event. The guests said the two countries have been enjoying diplomatic relations for 20 years.

It was also reported that direct flights have been discussed between Rome and Tbilisi.

The Independence Day of Georgia was also marked in Kiev, Ukraine yesterday. National folk ensembles took part in the concert supported by the Georgian Embassy.

Singers from Tbilisi arrived in Kiev to participate in the concert.

Georgia`s ambassador to Ukraine, Grigol Katamadze and Ukraine`s Culture and Sports Minister attended the concert.
(Rustavi 2)

Hail inflicts heavy damage on villages in Eastern Georgia

Harvests and poultry were destroyed as hail hit two villages in the Lagodekhi district in eastern Georgia Saturday night.

It was reported that 20 hectares of vineyards, water melon and cucumber gardens were destroyed by the hail, which lasted 20 minutes.

The hail was accompanied by strong wind which damaged power wires, leaving the village of Gujareti in a blackout for several hours.

The local authorities are counting the damage inflicted on the villages by the natural disaster.
(Rustavi 2)

Saakashvili visits families affected by natural disaster

President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili, visited the families affected by a flood that killed 5 people in the Ortachala district of Tbilisi on May 13, 2012.

Saakashvili visited the Adeishvili-Chikovanis, the Kvelaishvilis and the Kavteladzes, who have been living in rented accommodation after their homes were destroyed by the natural disaster.

The president inspected the living conditions of the affected families and promised them assistance. He said employment problems should be solved for the families; therefore he would help them to undergo professional re-training at colleges.

Mikheil Saakashvili said the government should start working on a program for providing citizens living in barracks with other accommodations to avoid further problems.

11 families living in the garages in Gorgasali Street were affected by the flood that hit Tbilisi on May 13.

A special commission is documenting the damage inflicted on the families, which are supposed to accept remuneration from the Tbilisi City Hall`s fund.
(Rustavi 2)

Chess to become mandatory subject at schools

At every public school in Georgia, chess will become a mandatory subject starting in September. The world`s 11-times champion, Gary Kasparov created a special computer program for Georgian students. All students of public schools will be able to play chess online in the beginning.

The presentation of the new program was held at the Tbilisi N1 experimental school today. Minister of Education Dimitri Shashkini and the author of the program attended the presentation. The world`s greatest player of all times even played chess with the students of this school
(Rustavi 2)