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The News in Brief

Monday, September 1
US Secretary of Defence visits Georgia

United States Secretary of Defence Chuck Hagel will visit Georgia after the NATO Summit next week.

The Pentagon issued a message on Friday that read: "From Wales, the secretary will next travel to Georgia, one of the United States' and NATO's most important and capable partners.”

"The Georgian military has been a valued partner of the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the secretary looks forward to thanking the Georgian people for their contributions and sacrifices over the last decade,” stated the message by Pentagon press secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby.

"Obviously, Georgia shares our concerns about Russia's actions in Ukraine, and that will, of course, be at the top of his agenda during that visit.”

This will be Hagel’s first visit to Georgia as US Secretary of Defence however he has met his Georgian counterpart Irakli Alasania twice at the Pentagon since August 2013. He also met Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili earlier this year in Munich.

80 percent of Association Agreement will come into effect from September 1

Reportedly, all essential elements of the Association Agreement will temporarily come into effect from September 1. To define this more accurately, before the deal is completely implemented in Georgia, its 80 percent including the section on the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) will come into force. Within the agreement, almost all Georgian products will be exempted from taxes; however some previous regulations on them will still remain in force.

The negotiations on completing the Association Agreement between Georgia and the EU were launched in July, 2010, while the negotiations on the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area – in December, 2011.

In the process of negotiations, between the two parties as many as 14 plenary sessions were held on the political section of the agreement, 6 rounds of talks -- regarding the DCFTA and around 100 video conferences.

The negotiations were wrapped up in July, 2013; the deal was initialed in November, 2013 at the Vilnius Summit and was signed on 27 June, 2014. Before the document is completely implemented, the national parliaments of all EU member countries must ratify it.

Georgian, French Defense Ministers Meet in Paris

French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian met his Georgian counterpart Irakli Alasania in Paris on August 29.

“France supports Georgia’s full integration into the Euro-Atlantic structures; it supports Georgia to have such weaponry that is relevant to security challenges existing in the region. The French Defense Minister thanked us for our participation in the EU mission in the [Central African Republic]. Our bilateral relations will further deepen and become more comprehensive,” Alasania said after the meeting.

Accompanied by chief of the general staff of the armed forces, Major-General Vakhtang Kapanadze, the Georgian Defense Minister arrived in Paris aftervisiting Georgian troops in the Central African Republic, where they serve under the French command as part of the EU military mission.

Georgian nationals flee Donetsk

The embassy of Georgia to Ukraine has confirmed the reports that the Georgian nationals have started to flee the city of Donetsk after Russia`s military incursion on the ground. The military operations have the Georgian embassy has also been closed due to the escalation of the situation in the East of Ukraine, however, the hotline operators work non-stop to provide assistance to the Georgian citizens in need.

The diplomatic mission has already addressed the Georgian nationals residing in Ukraine to leave the conflict areas.

New details about murder case at Sky Bar

New details regarding the recent fatal stabbing of 35-year-old DJ Dachi Darchia have become known. The director of Sky Bar where the victim used to work, says that the conflict between Darchia and the person accused of murdering him did not begin at the bar.

According to Davit Kvirtia’s comment to Palitra TV, Dachi Darchia played at Sky Bar and his last day at the bar was not anything out of the ordinary: he did his usual routine and went home. The conflict which resulted in him getting stabbed to death occurred later, in a garden near an Armenian Church.

Dachi Darchia was urgently taken to a hospital, but the doctors failed to save him and he died of blood loss. The 20-year-old man accused in his murder was detained by the police at the scene of the incident.