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Compiled by Messenger Staff
Thursday, February 21
Minister Panjikidze says the ambassadors who were withdrawn did not follow the Ministry’s instructions

Tabula reports that the Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze hopes the Parliament will approve of the new ambassadors. However, Panjikidze said the ambassadors who were withdrawn from the relevant countries remain holding their position, neglecting the instructions of the ministry. She said those ambassadors whom the ministry demanded to withdraw were given particular terms: some till March 1st, some till March 15th and others till April 1st. Panjikidze said the ministry was right to have demanded their removal because she said in many cases, the ambassadors are not used to following the directions of the ministry. According to Panjikidze, one of their tasks was to present 100 days of the new government to the countries were they serve, which Panjikidze said they did not accomplish.

The Foreign Minister also spoke about the new candidates of ambassadors emphasizing their professionalism. “The candidates had committee hearings and meetings with the parliamentary majority and minority. Everything has gone well. We have presented high professionals. A lot of them are returning to diplomatic service,” Panjikidez said. Tabula reports that Georgia is supposed to have 19 new ambassadors, including those who have changed through rotation and also those who have left the positions on the own decision.

Koba Davitashvili remains a member of coalition

Head of People’s Party, Koba Davitashvili, remains a member of the Georgian Dream coalition. According to Netgazeti, Davitahsvili made the statement after the February 19th session of the parliamentary majority. “The decision was the following: we are co-warriors, we will not please our enemies. There is no confrontation between us and we will continue struggling for our values,” Netgazeti cited Davitashvili.

Approving of the criticism inside the team, Davitahsvili stressed the coalition will fulfill the promises given to the people. Eka Beselia, Chairperson of the Parliamentary Human Rights Committee, said Koba is their friend and co-warrior and they would do everything to satisfy the needs of the people.

Pre-court session held on Akhalaia’s case

A pre-court session was held at Tbilisi City Court on the cases of Bacho Akhalaia and other former officials. Liberali reports that the court hearing started 45 minutes later. However, Akhalaia was greeted with great applause. Accused of violating his official duties and the illegal suppression of freedom, Akhalaia’s supporters gathered outside the court with T-shirts that read “Today I am also Bacho Akhalaia.”

Akhalaia’s wife discouraged the fact that Akhalaia’s case was discussed in a small hall, suspicious that it was done on purpose. “They do not want a lot of people to attend the process,” she said. Although the judge took a decision to move to the largest hall, there were still a lot of people in the 150-place hall.

UNM members Nugzar Tsiklauri and Akaki Minashvili also attended the process. Representatives of the OSCE were also present. Due to high public interest towards the case, the judge allowed the media to air several minutes of the court session. However, due to huge the amount of material, only the part of the evidence was considered while the process will continue on February 28th.