The messenger logo

The News in Brief

Thursday, February 28
Mikheil Saakashvili visits Azerbaijan

Mikheil Saakashvili is paying a two-day visit to Azerbaijan. The president's administration reports that Saakashvili will hold a face-to-face meeting with his Azerbaijani counterpart Ilham Aliyev. Meetings with the chairperson of the Azerbaijani parliament Oktai Asadov and Prime Minister Artur Rasizde are also planned. Saakashvili arrived to Tbilisi International Airport in a “Nissan” electric car with the first lady of Georgia Sandra Roelofs, Tbilisi Mayor Gigi Ugulava with his spouse, the former Prime Minister Nika Gilauri and other parliamentary minority leaders without security guards.

Saakashvili was driving the car himself. “I have not been using the security guard service for the fifth week, as soon as it became clear that the security service has serious problems. Nobody can hinder us in meeting people and carry out our function. There is no need for excess dramatization and speculation on this topic,” Saakashvili said. (IPN)

U.S. urges government, president to reach a solution

The cohabitation between the government and the president of Georgia is moving closer to October, when Saakashvili’s presidential term expires, but it is currently in “a tense period”, U.S. ambassador, Richard Norland, said on February 26.

“The U.S. urged both sides to continue efforts to reach a solution. The ambassador had the privilege of meeting with President Saakashvili and Prime Minister Ivanishvili and he believes they were working to find a solution,” the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi said.

The Ambassador said the president had assured him that he had no intention of dissolving the government or making any unusual constitutional moves, and the ambassador said he accepted this. There was a need now to balance the desire for justice with the need to avoid vengeance and retribution. (Civil.Ge)

U.S. Ambassador meets Iia II

U.S. Ambassador Richard Norland and his wife visited head of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Ilia II, upon the latter’s invitation on Tuesday, the U.S. embassy said.

“The patriarch and the ambassador exchanged views on recent progress in Georgia's domestic affairs and on efforts by the government and the opposition to resolve ongoing political tensions,” the U.S. embassy said.

“The patriarch encouraged international friends of Georgia to assist in helping Georgians find the right balance between the search for justice and the need to avoid vengeance,” it said. (Civil.Ge)

Zurab Abashidze leaves for Prague

Special Representative of the Prime Minister for the normalization of relations with Russia Zurab Abashidze, left for Prague.

Zurab Abashidze will meet with Deputy Foreign Minister of Russia Grigory Karasin in Prague on March 1.

According to Abashidze, the parties will discuss the issue of trade, transport and humanitarian and cultural relations.

The first meeting of the Special Representatives of Georgia and Russia was held in Geneva on December 14 last year. (Front News)

Nino Burjanadze questioned by the Prosecutor’s Office

Nino Burjanadze, the leader of the Democratic Movement and one of the organizers of the May 26 rally, was questioned by the Prosecutor’s Office yesterday. Hundreds of people, including politicians, have been interrogated with regard to the May 26 event, Chief Prosecutor Archil Kbilashvili said at a meeting with the media. According to him, the investigation is still underway and it is unknown when it will be completed. He added that the policeman’s death is also being investigated. (IPN)

Probation Ministry calls on prosecutor`s office to question Saakashvili

The Ministry of Corrections and Legal Assistance of Georgia calls on the office of the Chief Prosecutor to interrogate President Saakashvili regarding his statements made in his interview with the Georgian Public Broadcaster on February 23. The president spoke about the concerning situation in Georgian prisons currently.

Saakashvili alleged the situation was very concerning like in the period of Shevardnadze, problems of gambling, drug addiction and reinforcement of criminal networks. Ministry officials think that the president`s statements can become a reason of beginning investigation.

“I call on the prosecutor's office to interrogate the author of this statement by Mikheil Saakashvili as a person having and spreading information,” Ministry official Irakli Kordzaia said. (Rustavi 2)

Patriarch Receives Representatives of Rospotrebnadzor

Patriarch Ilia II received representatives of Rospotrenbadzor (Russian Federal Supervisory Agency for Consumer Goods Quality) at the Patriarch’s residence. The patriarch mentioned with the representatives of Russia’s sanitary supervisory service that Georgian wine and water will be back on the Russian market. Ilia the second believes that this fact will have its role in regulating relations between the countries. The Russian sanitary supervisory service representatives visited Kakheti. (IPN)