The messenger logo

The News in Brief

Friday, August 26
NATO-Georgia Substantial Package: The Netherlands supports implementation of support package

The Kingdom of the Netherlands has vowed to support Georgia implement several projects within theNorth Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO)-Georgia Substantial Package, which is aimed at strengthening Georgia’s defensive capabilities and bringing the country closer to NATO.

As well as providing tangible support for Georgia to implement certain aspects of the support package, the Dutch Embassy also promised to allocate funds for a new Defence Institution Building in Georgia.

This agreement came after yesterday’s meeting between Ambassador of the Netherlands to Georgia Johannes Douma with Georgia’s Deputy Foreign Minister David Dondua at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tbilisi.

The NATO-Georgia Substantial Package is a set of measures and initiatives aimed at strengthening Georgia’s defence capabilities and developing closer security cooperation and interoperability with NATO members.

The support package was adopted at the NATO Wales Summit in 2014.

The package outlined extra support for Georgia in 13 different areas of the defence and security-related sectors including strategic level advice and liaison, defence capacity building and training activities, multi-national exercises and enhanced interoperability opportunities with NATO members. (

Georgia pipeline plot suspect denies link to Ukraine

One of the seven men arrested in Georgia for planning to blow up a Russian gas pipeline has denied any links to Ukraine.

The suspect, Beka Bekauri, is still in hospital after suffering serious head trauma. He has had an operation and his condition is now stable.

His confession to being part of a plot to blow up a part of a Russian gas pipeline which transits through Georgia was brought into question by suspicion that the confession had been extracted under duress.

His family claims that he was beaten during his interrogation in order to force him to confess.

The counter-intelligence service claims that the beating took place as he was trying to escape arrest.

Lawyer Maia Chrelashvili said her client said he was beaten by special forces at the moment he was arrested.

None of the detainees tried to escape or use a weapon as they were arrested according to Chrelashvili, who also said there was no violence during Bekauri’s interrogation.

The State Security Service (SUS) said earlier that one of the suspects had been traveling frequently to Ukraine, but beyond that no actual link had been found.

Through his lawyer, Bekauri denied that he had any links to Ukraine.

The implication would be that the plot was connected to the many exiled National Movement politicians who are in Ukraine, some of whom are involved with the new Kiev government and others also with the war against Russian-backed separatists in the southeast of the country.

According to the lawyer, Bekauri’s motive was personal. He ‘hates Russian aggression’, she explained, and that’s why he wanted to organize the blowing up of the pipeline, which carries Russian natural gas to Armenia. Georgia taps some of the gas as transit fee, corresponding to around 12 percent of the national supply.

His aunt, Mziana Subeliani, is convinced that he was beaten during questioning.

“They didn’t let him go until they had broken his skull. With his skull broken, he said what they wanted him to say.”

She claimed the reason Bekauri was beaten was to give the impression that the case is being vigorously investigated.

“My nephew has no ties with politics,” she says.

Vladimer Rukhadze, another suspected, began a hunger strike to protest Tbilisi City Court’s decision to place all of the suspects in pre-trial detention. (

Nomination of MP Soso Jachvliani as head of the state company contains elements of corruption - Transparency International-Georgia

The Transparency International-Georgia considers that the nomination of MP Soso Jachvliani as head of the state company contains elements of corruption.

According to a statement of Transparency International Georgia, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili said at the government session today that a new state company is planned to be set up within the framework of the mountain resort development company, the aim of which is to develop the resort of Tetnuldi.

"The Prime Minister also said that the company will be headed by Soso Jachvliani, who is currently a Member of Parliament and deputy chairman of the Georgian Dream faction.

“The existence of state companies is an approved practice in developed states, though corruption risks associated with such companies requires relevant regulations. One of the main important principles of management of state companies is prevention of political interference in the companies’ activities and management.

“One of the main dangers is that the companies may be used as a 'reward' instrument for individuals linked with the ruling party or government at the expense of the state budget. The nomination of Soso Jachvliani for the post leads to such suspicions”, says the statement.

The organization calls on the government to make decisions related to the management of state companies in a transparent way. (IPN)