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The News in Brief

Friday, February 20
Georgia ‘deeply concerned’ by situation in Debaltseve, Eastern Ukraine

Georgia’s Foreign Ministry is expressing grave concern by the increasing hostilities of Russian-backed separatists in the eastern Ukrainian city of Debaltseve.

Fighting has resumed in eastern Ukraine despite Russian and Ukrainian leaders signing a ceasefire agreement last week.

Georgia’s Foreign Ministry said the separatists’ increasing hostilities was a "blatant violation” of the Minsk Agreement signed between Ukraine and Russia after 17 hours of talks in Minsk, Belarus on February 12.

The deal outlined a ceasefire at 00:01am on 15 February, the withdrawal of heavy weapons and other measures. The leaders of Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany were involved in the lengthy talks and the eventual agreement, which envisaged resolution to the ongoing Ukrainian conflict.

We hope that the "Normand Format" member states will put maximum efforts into preventing further escalation and loss of control of the situation in eastern Ukraine,” said Georgia’s Foreign Ministry.

The Georgian side said the situation was further complicated by the fact the separatists did not allow the OSCE Special Observer Mission to monitor Debaltseve and the surrounding area.

"We call on the signatory parties of the Minsk Agreement signed on February 12 to comply fully with its obligations and respect Resolution #2202, adopted by the United Nations (UN) Security Council on February 17,” the Ministry said. (

“The new agreement demonstrates that we are not going to join Russia”

The new agreement signed between occupied Tskhinvali and Russia demonstrates that we are not going to join Russia, occupied South Ossetia’s de facto head of the so-called State Committee for Information and the Press, Viacheslav Gobozov has said.

“The border between our two countries has not recently had a legal status, now this problem has been solved. The agreement demonstrates that we are not going to join Russia”, Viacheslav Gobozov said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and occupied South Ossetia’s de-facto Foreign Minister David Sanakoev signed the so-called state border agreement in Moscow on February 18. (Frontnews)

Luka Kurtanidze becomes a Member of Parliament

Luka Kurtanidze has become a Member of Parliament.

Majority of MPs supported Kurtanidze’s candidacy.

He replaced late Tamaz Avdaliani in the Parliament. Luka Kurtandize has already started performing MP’s functions. (IPN)

Will the control over noise become stricter?

The regulations on noise control may become stricter.

This initiative of the City Council will be discussed at the committee. If adopted, the penalties will be set for the whole country.

Physical and legal entities will be fined for making noise in the morning and at night. The monitoring will be carried out by the patrol police. (Rustavi2)

Georgian side is doing its best for our actors to arrive in the U.S. - Ministry of Culture

As InterPressNews has been informed by the Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection, the Georgian side is doing its best to help actors arrive in the U.S. so that they can attend the Oscar awards ceremony.

According to the Ministry’s press-service, Culture Minister Giorgadze has already had a phone conversation with Georgia’s consul in Istanbul Irakli Asashvili regarding their travel issues. In turn, Asashvili contacted the Georgian cast members.

Reportedly, the creative crew of “Tangerines” is in Turkey at the moment. They cannot travel to the U.S. due to bad weather.

The awards ceremony will be held on February 22. The movie “Tangerines”, directed by Zaza Urushadze, is nominated in the best foreign film category.

As Georgia’s consul to Istanbul has informed InterPressNews, the problem has been successfully resolved and the Georgian cast will leave for Los Angeles shortly. (IPN)