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The News in Brief

Wednesday, August 22
Bidzina Ivanishvili met with foreign diplomats

Bidzina Ivanishvili and other leaders of the Georgian Dream Coalition met with representatives of the diplomatic corps today to state their positions regarding the pre-election situation in Georgia. Bidzina Ivanishvili reported the violations that have occurred during the pre-election period to ambassadors.

Bidzina Ivanishvili objected to the election numeration scandal, in which Bidzina Ivanishvili's coalition Georgian Dream was deprived off the number seven and instead granted the number 41.

"I talked with the ambassadors about various legal and illegal activities and I showed very clearly my dissatisfaction about what they were waiting for by keeping silent. I did not want to emphasize this in the Georgian media. I spoke about many violations, the facts of which you are aware, nothing secret or new, I simply emphasized different things." Ivanishvili told journalists after the meeting. (Rustavi 2)

Mayor, MP candidate visit medical center in Gldani

The head of the Tbilisi branch of the United National Movement and the party`s majoritarian MP candidate for the Gldani district visited the Med-Capital Medical Centre in Gldani today. Gigi Ugulava and Niko Khachirashvili met with the staff of the clinic and talked about the state-funded insurance program, which will begin in September.

Ugulava and Khachirashvili checked if the clinic is prepared to serve more patients after the insurance program takes effect, as the number of clinic patients is expected to increase significantly after the new government program begins.

After meeting with the staff of the clinic, Gigi Ugulava and Niko Khachirashvili met with the voters in the Gldani 8th Micro-Region and spoke about the major points of the ruling party's political program. (Ruistavi 2)

Davit Bakradze presents Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti prosecutor Roland Akhalaia as a majoritarain candidate

Parliament Chairman Davit Bakradze has presented Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti prosecutor Roland Akhalaia as a majoritarain candidate of the ruling National Movement in Zugdidi, the capital of the Samegrelo region.

In addition, Bakradze will present Goderdzi Bukia as a majoritarian candidate in Khobi and Nauli Janashia in Martvili. (Interpressnews)

Excursion bus fell in a ravine

A minibus heading from the remote Shatili region to Tbilisi fell in a ravine. The accident occurred in the village of Kakhmati. The bus was carrying final form pupils from an excursion. The minibus, the driver of which failed to control the wheel, was turned on its side when rescuers and police officers arrived at the side.

Workers managed to rescue all of the passengers out of the minibus. 17 pupils were injured in the accident, three of whom were transferred to Ghudushauri hospital. Doctors say their situation is very grave; however, their lives have been saved. Other pupils were sent to different hospitals in Tbilisi, Mtskheta and Dusheti. They will be discharged soon. (GHN)

UNESCO experts to arrive in Georgia on September 2-3

UNESCO experts will arrive in Georgia on September 2nd-3rd, Father Besarion, a representative of the Patriarchate, told InterpressNews.

According to Besarion the experts will visit the town of Mtskheta and Bagrati church in Kutaisi. On June 26th a UNESCO committee held a meeting in Saint Petersburg. At the meeting Mtskheta was described as a monument in danger.

"UNESCO called on the government to stop construction efforts in the historic town of Mtskheta until they are agreed upon by UNESCO. Otherwise, Mtskheta will be removed from the list of important monuments of the world." Father Besarion said. (interpressnews)

Government discussed amendments to state budget

The state budget for 2012 will be amended due to the disaster, which inflicted serious damage to several regions of Georgia. The Kakheti region was affected most of all by the hail last month and the windstorm last week. The government discussed the amendments at yesterday`s session, which was chaired by Prime Minister Vano Merabishvili.

Fifty million GEL will be allocated for the Disaster Relief Foundation and these funds will be spent on emergency measures in the affected regions. In addition, the funds of the Kakheti Development Program will be also increased and its financial resources will be 110 million GEL, 20 million of which will be spent on disaster relief assistance.

The government will also increase funding of the Kakheti municipal governments. 17 million GEL from the government`s reserve funds will be spent on rehabilitation measures. Funding for the Ministry of Health and Social Care will be also increased for the same reason.

Prime Minister Vano Merabishvili thanked ministers for their work in the affected regions last week. He said the government would continue to work in emergency regime until all programs aimed at rehabilitation of the damaged regions are implemented.

The government will submit the draft amendments to the state budget to parliament today. The document will be discussed at committee sessions tomorrow and afterwards a special session of the parliament will be summoned to adopt the amendments. ghn)

Georgian MPs meet OSCE delegation

Georgian MPs have met with OSCE Parliamentary Assembly delegation members. The meeting, held in Parliament, was attended by Vice Speaker Gigi Tsereteli, and members of the Georgian delegation to the OSCE – Akaki Minashvili, Giorgi Kandelaki, Chiora Taktakishvill and Guram Chakhvadze.

The election environment was discussed at the meeting, Gigi Tserteli told journalists.

‘The OSCE representatives will observe the election campaign in Georgia for several days. They will also see how laws are implemented and how reforms are carried out in this country’, Gigi Tsereteli said.

According to Tsereteli, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly delegation members have not made any assessment yet.

"OSCE will be one of the main observers of the Georgian elections", Tsereteli said. (Interpressnews)

Mikheil Saakashvili meeting with population affected by inclement weather

President Mikheil Saakashvili is meeting with the population affected by the inclement weather in Kakheti. Saakashvili has already met with residents of the village of Leliani, an InterpressNews correspondent reports. Houses were left without roofs in the village.

The 9th Channel and Info 9 wanted to cover the President’s meeting with the population but police did not allow journalists to attend the meeting which led to a minor incident. (ipn)