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The News in Brief

Thursday, July 11
Nino Giorgobiani – Kissing is not banned at public places

The Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) made an explanation about the amendments to be made to the code of administrative offences and says that the draft law will not ban kissing in public places.

“The amendments mainly concern responsibility for drinking alcohol in the streets, stadiums, transport and other public places,” spokesperson Nino Giorgobiani said.

She said that the law on this issue is already in effect, the draft law presented by the MIA to the parliament only requires stricter attention to penalties.

Drinking alcohol in public places and abusing the dignity or morality of people in the streets, stadiums, square, parks, all kinds of public transport and other public places is punishable with up to a 300 GEL fine, apart from trade and public food stores, where it’s allowed to sell alcohol. A second offence will cost 500 GEL, and in the case of the third time, a 700 GEL fine is applied.

The MIA addressed parliament with the proposal to review the code of administrative offences and initiating monetary penalties for this law. (IPN)

Embassy of Georgia releases a statement to Egypt

In connection with the situation in Egypt, the Embassy of Georgia to Egypt has released another statement. According to the Embassy, Georgian tourists should not leave the tourist resort areas. Also, Georgian citizens residing in the cities of Egypt should avoid movement near the places of demonstrations and mass rallies.

"In connection with the situation in Egypt, we would like to note that Georgian citizens should refrain from travelling to the Sinai Peninsula and the Red Sea resorts (Sharm El - Sheikh, Taba, Dahabi, Catherine's Monastery). Recently, crimes have significantly increased in the Sinai Peninsula. Clashes between armed groups and police resulted in victims," the embassy says.

According to the statement, across the country, Egyptian law enforcement agencies have intensified security and the protection of resorts. “Nevertheless, there is the danger of terrorist acts and attacks on foreigners. Georgian citizens may contact the embassy in case of need, hotlines: +2010 110 888 44,” the statement says. (IPN)

Irakli Alasania – Georgian troops in Afghanistan moved to a safer place

The Minister of Defence, Irakli Alasania, states that Georgian troops in Afghanistan have moved to a safer place. “Our contingent in Afghanistan has started a new process of working. The security work planned during my visit by the commanders of Georgian troops and NATO command, has almost been completed. The two small bases that were planned to be closed are now closed. Our troops have moved to a safer place,” Irakli Alasania said.

Alasania said in an interview with Kvela Siakhle that the Taliban is very active. As for the investigation of the video footage released on behalf of the Taliban, just an IP address to solve the case if not enough.

“I know the case materials and I tell you that there are many tricks to mask IP addresses, though the investigation is going forward and if we want to find the truth, we must not hurry,” the Minister of Defence said. (IPN)

First Georgian-Russian forum to be held in Tbilisi

Tbilisi will host the first Georgian-Russian forum on July 11 and will focus on different issues in relations between Russia and Georgia, and perspectives of development of Georgian-Russian relations. The forum's organizer is the Georgian partnership forum.

The main purpose of the event is to create a permanent platform for dialogue between non-governmental organizations of Russia and Georgia for the implementation of bilateral projects, including those aimed at resolving the conflict.

The Georgian Partnership Forum consists of leading non-governmental organizations of Russia and Georgia: International Center on Conflict and Negotiation (Georgia), Freedom of Information Foundation (Russia), Human Rights Resource Centre (Russia), etc. (Trend)

Family no longer wants to dissect Mikautadze’s corpse

The family of Mamuka Mikautadze, who committed suicide last week, no longer wants to an autopsy performed on his body. After the external examination of the corpse, the widow of Mikautadze says there is no need for an autopsy. However, an independent expert says it is very difficult to set the exact reasons of the death without dissection of the body.

Meanwhile, the Young Georgian Lawyers Association plans to file a complaint at the court against the police to demand compensation for the family. The NGO thinks the death reasons of Mikautadze must be investigated. (Rustavi 2)

Paata Burchuladze celebrates 35 years on the stage

Worldwide famous Georgian opera singer, Paata Burchuladze, has been performing for 35 years on various stages. A concert dedicated to this special date was held at Tbilisi State Concert Hall on July 9th accompanied by the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, and conducted by Yuri Temirkanov. (The Messenger)

Restoration of Ishkhani church underway without Georgian experts

The restoration work, which has not been approved of by Georgian experts, is still underway at the Ishkhani church - a cultural heritage site of Georgia on the territory of Turkey. The administration of the patriarch of Georgia calls on the Ministry of Culture to provide that Georgian restoration experts join the process soon, because the restoration work carried out by Turkish specialists is not being properly done.

Deputy Minister of Culture, Marine Mizandari, says they have asked the Turkish side informally many times to let Georgian experts monitor the restoration work, but the process has been delayed due to the fact that there is no inter-governmental agreement between the countries. (Rustavi 2)

Portrait of the Patriarch on the carpet – a present for Ilia II from Azeri Muslims

Patriarch of Georgia hosted representatives of the Azerbaijan Center for Culture on July 9 at the Patriarchy of Georgia. The meeting was attended by a group of roughly twenty Azerbaijani students of various universities of Georgia as well as the Chairman of the Religious Council of Muslims of Azerbaijan, Aziz Nabiyev and Manager of Alulbeyt Cultural Educational Religious Center, Faig Nabayev.

Nabiyev presented the Patriarch with a carpet made in Iran, featuring an exact portrait of Ilia II on both sides. The carpet was being made by two specialists for ten months, ten hours a day. It was made using natural cotton thread that features one hundred and forty different colors. The Chairman of the Alulbeyt Center said the present was aimed at congratulating the Patriarch of Georgia on his thirty-fifth church service anniversary and 80th birthday celebration. (Georgian News)