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The News in Brief

Tuesday, June 25
Georgian PM Visits Israel

PM Ivanishvili began a two-day visit to Israel on June 24, during which he met his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres.

Ivanishvili, who ahead of the visit said that he would like Israel to become Georgia's "strategic partner", will also hold talks with Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein; Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, Theophilus III, as well as the Israeli business community, according to the Georgian PM’s office.

The Georgian delegation also includes Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze; Minister of Economy, Giorgi Kvirikashvili; State Minister for Diaspora, Konstantine Surguladze; the PM’s adviser, Gia Khukhashvili and Head of the Georgian National Investment Agency, Giorgi Pertaia.

Georgian alpinists transferred to military base after terror attack

Two Georgian alpinists, Aphi Gigani and Bidzina Gujabidze, who survived Saturday's terror attack in Pakistan, have been transferred to a military base by helicopter. Islamic militants disguised as policemen killed 11 foreign climbers and a Pakistani guide in a brazen overnight raid against their campsite at the base of one of the world's tallest mountains in northern Pakistan. Around 15 gunmen attacked the camp at around 11 p.m. Saturday.

All expeditions have been cancelled due to the tragedy. The Georgian mountain climbers have contacted their relatives. They say they are safe now.
(Rustavi 2)

Georgian delegation leaves for Geneva

A Georgian governmental delegation has left for Geneva, where the 24th round of internationally mediated peace talks on the Georgian-Russian conflict will be held. Georgian officials plan to raise the issue of the expansion of the administrative boundary line in the Russian occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali regions. Solutions to the IDPs` problems will also be a topic of discussion at the negotiations. The interim chairperson of the Abkhazian government, Vakhtang Kolbaia will participate in the international negotiations for the first time. He is among the Georgian delegation.
(Rustavi 2)

Georgia to receive $140 million for education under Millennium Challenge Program

The U.S. Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation Board of Directors has approved a five-year, $140 million compact with Georgia to increase the quality of human capital by investing in science and technology education and workforce development. This second MCC compact reflects the continued strong partnership between the U.S. and Georgia.

"I want to thank our American counterparts, who are taking care to develop Georgia as a country with a democratic and knowledge-based society. This is an essential step with regard to development of this process,” Minister of Education and Science of Georgia, Giorgi Margvelashvili, said at the event held at the Radisson Blu Iveria.

According to Margvelashvili, "this compact will strengthen teaching, learning and educational intuitions in Georgia so that students can learn skills that are directly matched to industries that are driving growth. A better-educated workforce will accelerate economic growth, stimulate job creation, reinforce democratic participation, and better position Georgia to be a strong trade partner of the United States.”

The U.S. Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation Board selected Georgia as eligible to develop a second compact in January 2011; the country successfully completed a five-year, $395.3 million compact in March 2011.

Batumi to host joint conference between GUAM Parliamentary Assembly and Baltic Assembly

The joint international conference of the GUAM Parliamentary Assembly and the Baltic Assembly "GUAM and the Baltic countries - partners for a safe and successful region" will be held in Batumi on June 27-28.

The conference will be opened by GUAM PA chairman and Vice-Speaker of the Georgian Parliament Zurab Abashidze. The Baltic Assembly President, Raymond Deonis and others will attend.

The Georgian parliament said that a practical and intelligent approach to the fight against organized crime, cooperation in the energy sector, investments in the region, cooperation in the field of tourism, political cooperation, European and Euro-Atlantic integration, cooperation prospects between GUAM and the Baltic Assembly are among items listed on the conference's agenda.

Georgian President pardons Turkish businessman

Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili pardoned Turkish businessman Orhan Aksu at the request of the Patriarch Ilia II.

As the attorney of the Turkish businessman Irma Chkadua said on Friday, her client's honor and dignity have been offended, and he has been subjected to tortures for several years.

According to her, the Turkish businessman realized multi-million projects in Georgia.

Aksu has been serving his sentence since 2007. He was sentenced to a 12-year term in prison on charges of bribery and the use of false invoices.

According to Chkadua, at one time Aksu's company won many tenders, and it built Gldani prison No. 8, the House of Justice, the new building of the Interior Ministry, refugee settlements, roads and other facilities.

Puppy House in Tbilisi: care and training for your dogs

Amy, Mura, Lisie, and Debo are the names of some of the dogs visiting the new Puppy House Balto in Tbilisi every day. They anxiously wait for the arrival of instructors at 7 am and spend the day alongside them. Dog owners can bring their pets aged three months to two years to this house. Their dogs will be cared for by a special group of pet instructors. Founder of the Puppy House, Gocha Tvauri, established the house because of his special love for dogs. He said puppies were taught interaction with each other and people, which is important for them.

Germany opened the first puppy house, whereas today they are popular worldwide. Irina Kharebashvili would not have imagined months ago there would be such house for her pet in Tbilisi. The Tbilisi Puppy House – named after the popular cartoon character - is the only one in Georgia so far.
(Georgian News)