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The News in Brief

Monday, December 22
Two Georgians kidnapped at administrative border

Two Georgian citizens have been taken hostage from Gori villages today- Vasil Khidasheli, 19, from the village Tsitelubani and Aleksandre Shiukashvili, 32, from the village Kirbali.

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) international organisations have already been informed regarding the facts.

Locals from Tsitelubani have stated that Khidasheli was peacefully grazing cattle and he did not violate the so-called administrative border with de-facto Tskhinvali region.

They informed as well that Khidasheli’s father was also detained this summer at the same location and was released from the Tskhinvali remand center after paying a 2000-rouble fine

According to the MIA, the person was detained near the occupation line, presumably for illegal crossing of the line.

As for Shiukashvili, locals have stated that he was with his underage son near the cemetery of the village Kirbali when so-called border-guards detained him.

"I was with my father; our horse was grazing near the cemetery when my dad noticed two men in the nearby bushes. He cried and we ran, but the men caught us and took my dad with a rope. They let me go,” the kid said.

According to Aleksandre Shiukashvili’s wife Manana Shiukashvili no one has contacted the family yet.

Three people seriously injured in three-car crash in Tbilisi

Three people have suffered serious injuries following a three-car crash in Tbilisi. The accident took place on the right bank of the Mtkvari River, near the Gulf petrol station on Saturday. The injured were taken to hospital. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia, the Investigation is underway under article 276 of the Criminal Code of Georgia.

Ivanishvili sticks to his words

There is no need for Georgia’s former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili’s return to Georgia's political stage, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili told journalists in Samtredia on Saturday.

“Ivanishvili has a clearly defined position; when he left politics he said: “I will return to politics if necessary”; however, today there is no need for his return to Georgia's political stage”, the Prime Minister said.

“Do not pay attention to a lot of speculation on this issue spread by the media outlets, there is no reason for stirring agitation”, he added.

When asked about Ivanishvili’s possible return to Georgia's political stage, he said: “Everyone will welcome this decision”.

Bidzina Ivanishvili became the Prime Minister of Georgia in October 2012, after his Georgian Dream coalition won the election. Thirteen months later, he stepped down after his party won the presidential elections, saying he'd fulfilled his task.

Garibashvili: Former Georgian Officials in Ukrain Damaging Ties

Georgian PM Irakli Garibashvili said he told Ukrainian leadership that their close ties with Georgia’s ex-president Mikheil Saakashvili and his allies, as well as appointing some former Georgian officials in the Ukrainian government, was damaging bilateral relations.

“People, who are wanted by us [authorities in Georgia] have settled comfortably in the Ukraine government. I think, it will be damaging for the Ukrainian government itself, and its image,” Garibashvili told journalists on December 20 in Samtredia, where he attended opening of a greenhouse farm, launched by a Georgian-Dutch joint venture.

“Ukrainian people are very dear to us; we support the Ukrainian government. But actions like this – and I personally spoke with President Poroshenko and Prime Minister Yatsenyuk and told them directly that such actions damage our relations,” the PM said.

“I cannot explain to the Georgian people why Adeishvili, who is wanted by the Georgian authorities through the Interpol’s red notice and who was one of the architects of the criminal regime… might be appointed in government of our friendly Ukraine,” Garibashvili said. There have been unconfirmed reports about Adeishvili being considered as a possible candidate for the head of Ukraine’s anti-corruption council.

The PM said that the same goes for Eka Zguladze, who, he said, was “one of the justifiers of that [Saakashvili’s] regime for years”, and Alexander Kvitashvili, who, the PM said, “actually destroyed the Georgian healthcare system.”

Zguladze, who was Georgia’s deputy interior minister in 2006-2012, has been appointed as first deputy interior minister of Ukraine on December 17, after President Poroshenko granted her Ukrainian citizenship.

Kvitashvili, who was Georgia’s healthcare minister in 2008-2010, took the same position in Ukraine on December 2.

National Guard Day

National Guard celebrates its 24th anniversary today. Guard personnel and invited guests marked the jubilee at the drill ground of National Guard.

Chief of General Staff of the GAF, Major General Vakhtang Kapanadze and Deputy Defence Minister Levan Girsiashvili congratulated the guard personnel on their jubilee.

While delivering a speech Chief of General Staff wished the guardsmen success in their future work. He underlined the importance of the Guard in the Georgian Army and spoke about its development plans.

Levan Girsiashvili congratulated the jubilee to the National Guard personnel on behalf of Defence Minister Mindia Janelidze. He outlined that development of National Guard is one of the priorities of the MoD. Deputy Minister also referred to the improvement of reserve and mobilization system.
(Ministry of Defense)

Two persons arrested on suspicion of giving bribes

Officers of the Anti-Corruption Agency of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia have arrested two persons on suspicion of giving bribes.

According to the Interior Ministry, Devi M. and Ednar Sh. offered 100,000 US dollars to Head of the Main Division of the Anti-Corruption Agency of Adjara, Emelsi Mukeria in exchange for the permission for the extraction of sand and gravel from the river Chorokhi without a license.

“Devi M. and Ednar Sh gave 20 000 US dollars to Emelsi Mukeria on December 18.The Investigation is underway under article 339, part II of the Criminal Code of Georgia”, the Interior Ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

Wine Museum project discussed with founder of Wine Culture Foundation

The founder of Wine Culture Foundation Santiago Vivanco visited Georgia to discuss Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili’s initiative concerning establishment of the Wine Museum in Georgia.

The meeting was held in the Government administration building

The representative of world famous Vivanco Dynasty acquainted Garibashvili with his own vision concerning the idea of the Museum.

He expresses his readiness to participate in the implementation of the Wine Museum Project in Georgia.

"It is a pleasure for me to visit the wine-producing country. I am happy to support such an important project like the Wine Museum in Georgia, as your wine is a father of wines in the world. I think, everyone who loves wine should visit Georgia,” Vivanco said after the meeting.

The meeting was attended by the Agriculture Minister Otar Danelia, Deputy Agriculture Minister Levan Davitashvili and Ambassador of Georgia to the Kingdom of Spain Zurab Pololikashvili.