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The News in Brief

Friday, January 22
Free hugs celebrate international date in Tbilisi

Georgia's celebration of the International Hug Day will be led by the mascot of the Tbilisi 2016 European Athletics Youth Championships in the streets of Tbilisi tomorrow.

The international sporting event's mascot - a squirrel named Coco - will find and hug passersby from the morning while handing out presents.

Starting outside the Tbilisi State University on Chavchavadze Ave, the mascot and other participants of the celebration will later move to the Georgian Technical University on Kostava St.

The event will be held by the Organisational Committee of the Tbilisi 2016 contest which has staged similar celebrations of the international date in recent years.

Last year another European Youth Olympic Festival mascot Peaky offered hugs to people on Tbilisiís streets.

International Hug Day was established in 1986 in the United States by Kevin Zaborney. Later adopted and celebrated worldwide, the date became known as the International Hug Day. (

MIA publishes crime statistics for January-December

The investigative agencies of Georgia comprise all structural units of the Ministries of Georgia, which conduct investigations of criminal cases according to their jurisdiction, namely: the General Prosecutorís Office, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Corrections and the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

In December 2015, 3612 crime cases have been registered out of which 1357 cases were solved. The figure of cases solved was 37,57%. In comparison with the results of the same period of the last year, the number of crimes increased by +3,57%.

In December 2015, 2446 criminal incidents were registered by MIA territorial units according to their investigation jurisdiction, out of which 1185 cases were solve, the number of cases solved standing at 48,45%. In comparison with the results of the same period of the previous year, the number of crimes decreased by +8,71%.

In the period between January-December 2015, all the investigative agencies throughout Georgia registered 35096 crimes, with 21176 cases being solved, resulting in a 60.34% success rate. In comparison with the results of the same period of the previous year, the number of crimes decreased by -3,92%. (

Vehicles coming from Russia have problems entering Georgia

Vehicles travelling from the Russian Federation are unable to enter Georgia due to bad weather which has closed the Kobi-Gudauri road.

As IPN was told by the Ministry of Regional Development, the movement of all types of vehicles is prohibited on the Kobi-Gudauri highway.

As for the customs checkpoint Kazbegi, according to the Revenue Service, the checkpoint is operating as usual.

The issue was also covered by the Russian media. About 100 cars are parked at the Russian border, according to Russian reports.

In addition, on 19 January traffic was suspended on the Transcaucasia highway, which is the only connecting road between Russia and South Ossetia. (