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The News in Brief

Thursday, September 25
Carl Bildt calls allegations published in Swedish media against him “raving’’

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt called the allegations published in the Swedish media against him “raving’’. According to the allegations, Carl Bildt helped former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to strengthen his influence.

"It's raving. If such allegations are really made against me, then I request official explanations from the Georgian government officials. However, I have not heard of such allegations from them. I am sure that it's complete nonsense, if I may say so," the Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs told the Russian RTVI.

A few weeks ago at a press conference in Denmark Goga Khaindrava accused Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt of political corruption with President Saakashvili's government and presented documents. He said those documents were confirming that Saakashvili's government had been transferring millions of dollars and Euros to Carl Bildt’s company. An article about Carl Bildt’s ties with Saakashvili's government was published in the Swedish media too. (IPN)

International audit company to examine City Park contract with Tbilisi government

Tbilisi mayor Davit Narmania announced at the meeting of the capital`s government today that the contract signed between the City Park Company and the Tbilisi government in 2006 would be examined by an international audit company. He said the legal and financial analysis would be carried out and it would strengthen the arguments of the mayor`s office that the terms of the contract must be amended for providing better and more comfortable parking services to the residents of Tbilisi.

Another issue, on which the mayor made a statement today, was the arrangement of the asylums for the homeless citizens, which has become the self-governments responsibility after the corresponding legislation, was amended. The Tbilisi government will soon announce a tender for the construction of the asylums for the homeless. (Rustavi2)


As per Deputy Minister of Corrections of Georgia Archil Talakvadze, the message - "They are not afraid of prisons" - mentioned in Kvesitadze’s talk-show is dangerous due to the country's recent past.

"When so many people were the victims of torture and inhuman treatment, the argument, as per which, the prisons can no longer be controlled without violence, is an indirect call. It will be very good, if the TV program covers how the European prisons are managed. We are asked to create the Scandinavian prisons in 2 years. The Ministry of Corrections and Legal Assistance of Georgia has its plan to solve the problems, while the charges have already been brought against the majority of the prisoners, who are covered in the video footages,"- Talakvadze said on the air of "Rustavi 2". (

Syrian Army General arrives in Sokhumi

Syrian army General Walid Marshan (a Syria-born ethnic Abkhaz) has arrived in Sokhumi occupied Abkhazia.

According to Apsnypress, Walid Marshan met with de-facto Chairman of the so-called State Committee for Repatriation, Khrips Jopua. They discussed the military-political situation in Syria. Khrips Jopua expressed concern about the ongoing events in Syria.

According to reports, the meeting was also attended by Syrian and Turkish repatriates. (frontnews)

Georgian MP: three out of five pregnant women opt for an abortion

The head of the healthcare committee in the Georgian parliament wants tougher punishment for illegal abortions.

In 2012, there were about forty thousand registered legal abortions in Georgia. But committee head Dimitri Khundadze stressed that there is no statistics regarding illegal abortions. According to him, three out of every five pregnant women are opting for abortion, and every day 100-150 abortions are performed across the country.

In July, Khundadze presented a draft bill to amend the criminal code and make the punishment for illegal abortions tougher.

Currently, a person who performs an illegal abortion can be given a fine, 100-240 hours of community service or be sentenced to correctional labor for 1-2 years. If an illegal abortion causes serious medical complications, the person who performed it can have their freedom restricted for up to 3 years, be sentenced to prison for 1-3 years, and their work license suspended for 3 years.

If an illegal abortion results in the death of the patient, the person who performed it can be imprisoned for 3-5 years, and get their license suspended for 3 years.

According to Khundadze, the attitude towards illegal abortions is too liberal in Georgia compared to any other European country. He and his colleague MP Miriani Tsiklauri, both from the Georgian Dream coalition, want tougher punishment for illegal abortions.

With their bill, there will not be fines for such violations. A performance of illegal abortion will result in 120-300 hours of community service or 1-2 years prison. Repeated violation will result in 2-4 years in prison and suspension of work license for 3 years.

If an illegal abortion leads to the death of the patient, the MPs suggest 4-6 years imprisonment and suspension of work license for 3 years.

Georgia is the leading country in the Caucasus in terms of number of abortions. Figures from the United Nations indicate that the abortion rate per thousand women aged 15-44 is 26.5 in Georgia, 16.9 in Armenia and 11.4 in Azerbaijan.

Interestingly, the CRRC Caucasus Barometer 2013 shows that Georgians are less likely to justify abortions than their counterparts in Armenia or Azerbaijan. 62 percent of survey respondents in Georgia said that having an abortion can never be justified, while in Armenia this number was 46 percent, and in Azerbaijan 36 percent. (DFWatch)