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The News in Brief

Wednesday, October 19
Democracy standing firmly Georgia

According to Senator Mark Senford, the democratic process has firmly taken root in Georgia.

Senford released a statement regarding the Georgian elections and congratulated the government for holding truly democratic elections.

The senator said that Georgia is a strong partner of the United States of America, and the fact that free and fair elections were held for the third time in four years impressive.

"If we look at the 25-year history of independence, it is clear to see that the democratic process has firmly taken root in Georgia - and this really deserves praise," the statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs reads. (IPN)

Explosion in Sokhumi ‘Aimed at Politician’

A man carrying an explosive device, was killed after the device went off outside the Abkhaz state television station in Sokhumi on Monday morning, officials in the breakaway region said.

Later on Monday afternoon, a senior Abkhaz official said that the explosive device was intended for an unspecified Abkhaz politician, but it apparently went off earlier than intended when the perpetrator was preparing to detonate it.

The explosion occurred at about 7am local time on Monday in a park adjacent to the Abkhaz state television’s premises in the breakaway region’s capital.

The Abkhaz Interior Minister, Aslan Kobakhia, said on Monday that morning the man killed in the explosion, aged between 35 and 40, was himself carrying a shrapnel-filled explosive device.

“An investigation was opened under the clauses of criminal code, which deals with terrorism and the illegal possession of explosives,” Ruslan Tirkba, chief prosecutor of Sokhumi, told Apsnipress news agency.

The Abkhaz leader, Raul Khajimba, who met with the leadership of the region's law enforcement agencies, ordered a step up of security measures at public places, his press office reported.

Russian news agencies Interfax and Sputnik-Abkhazia, reported earlier on Monday, quoting secretary of the Abkhaz national security council Mohamed Kilba, that the man carrying the explosives was not a resident of Abkhazia. He also said that the shrapnel-filled explosive device was indicatin that it was apparently designed to be detonated in a public place to cause maximum casualties, and the television station was most likely not the target.

Late on Monday afternoon, the Russian news agency Tass, as well as the Sputnik-Abkhazia news agency, quoted the secretary of the Abkhaz national security council, Mohamed Kilba, that the man, who died as a result of explosion, was from Russia; later reports said that the man was identified as a resident of Krasnodar region in southern Russia.

“It has been established that he arrived in [Abkhazia] on October 2. The terrorist attack he was trying to carry out was aimed at an Abkhaz politician,” Kilba said without identifying the politician.

He also said that the man previously visited Abkhazia in summer, “apparently for reconnaissance purposes.” According to Kilba, the Russian side is also involved in the investigation. (

Russian, Turkmen and Ukrainian airlines open new flights to/ out of Tbilisi

Three new airlines are opening flights out of Tbilisi from November: Turkmenistan Airlines, the Ukrainian DART Airline and Russia’s Pobeda.

Turkmenistan Airlines will fly twice weekly (Mon, Thu) to Ashgabad, starting November 2.

DART Airlines will begin flights to Kiev (Mon, Fri) from November 27.

Finally, Pobeda will have flights Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday to Rostov, beginning November 1, according to Mariam Neparidze, spokesperson for Tbilisi International Airport.

Out of the three airlines, only DART was servicing the Georgian market until now, with flights between Batumi and Kiev. (DF watch)