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Tsulukianiís education in question

By Keti Arjevanidze
Monday, March 4
The justice ministerís education became the subject of discussion and confrontation among political society, mainly among Thea Tsulukianiís political opponents.

Goga Khachidze, from the United National Movement (UNM), initiated an investigation into Tsulukianiís educational background, putting the ministerís legal degree in question and appealed to lawyers, journalists and the public to find out whether Tsulukianiís appointment on the post of justice minister is legal.

According to Khachidzeís Facebook post, the justice ministerís biography does not confirm that she has a juridical education, thus the UNM member finds it necessary to see her diploma. Kachidze believes that Tsulukiani has a degree in international relations not in law.

Later Tsulikiani responded the opinions around her qualification via Facebook, saying that there are some accusations against her which she does not consider worth responding to, although she added that soon she has a TV interview at GPB where she will speak about her latest visits abroad, adding ďif journalist are interested in my education I will respond to all the questions around my education.Ē

Tsulukiani ended her Facebook post, calling herself a lawyer.

Tsulukianiís education caused tension at Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB). Head of informational political department Khatuna Berdzenishvili revealed her accusations towards the director of GPB, saying that Giorgi Baratashvili asked her not to air the material including Tsuliakiniís education. Berdzenishvili states that head of GPB asked her not to make a report about the justice minister.

According to Berdzenishvili, the GPBís director offered her money and another post at the TV station. She thinks the head of GPB has political sympathy towards the new government, thus she has to leave her department.

In response to Berdzenishviliís statement, GPB's director said Berdzenishviliís accusations are absurd. Baratashvili explained that he had offered Berdzenishvili another position in TV, as the department which she was leading was going to be closed down. He stated that he proposed to Berdzenishvili an advisory role for the social-political direction of the channelís programs.

UNM member, Tinatin Bokuchava also commented on the matter, accusing the government of placing pressure on the free media and also spoke about Tsulikianiís law qualification and also wondered why she avoids showing her education documents.

Parliamentary minority demands that the justice minister's degree documents be made public.

Georgian Dream member Vakhtang Khmaladze said that if she does not have a juridical education, she cannot be the justice minister.