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The News in Brief

Wednesday, April 19
No-Vote Wins Turkish Referendum Ballot in Georgia

59.3% of voters in Georgia voted against the ruling party-proposed amendments in the April 16 Turkish constitutional referendum.

Two polling stations were opened for Turkish nationals in Georgia, one at the Turkish Embassy in Tbilisi, the country’s capital, and another one at the Consulate General in Batumi, in the Autonomous Republic of Adjara.

711 of 1789 eligible voters cast their ballots in the referendum vote, putting the voter turnout at 39.7%.

The voting results differed across the two locations; while Tbilisi voted overwhelmingly against the proposed changes with 65.1% no-voters to 34.9 in favor, the result in Batumi was almost tied with 50.9 against to 49.1% in favor of the amendments.

The April 16 referendum enables sweeping changes to the Turkish constitution, leading to the introduction of a presidential regime. (

Georgian priest suspected of murder suing government for unfair trial

A priest awaiting trial for murder is suing Georgia at the European Court of Human Rights, claiming the country is depriving him of a fair trial.

Archpriest Giorgi Mamaladze is accused of planning to poison a member of the Georgian patriarch’s inner circle.

The Tbilisi-based non-governmental organization Human Rights Center, which is assisting Mamaladze in the lawsuit, said on Wednesday it will file the suit this week.

Mamaladze decided to sue Georgia at the ICHR after the Prosecutor’s Office again rejected his lawyers’ appeal to exempt them from non-disclosure obligation they signed on to at an early stage of the investigation. The defense lawyers since claimed that being forced to not disclose documents has limited their competitiveness.

Mamaladze was detained at Tbilisi airport on February 10 as he was boarding a plane to Berlin sodium cyanide in his luggage. As an archpriest, he was part of the inner circle of Patriarch Ilia II, who had undergone laparoscopy on his bladder and was staying at a hospital in the German capital.

Law enforcers first tried to keep the arrest secret, but after Rustavi 2 reported on it, police had to acknowledge it and informed that the priest was under investigation for poisoning attempt.

The exact target of the alleged murder attempt has been a matter of much speculation. Officially the archpriest is charged with attempted homicide of Shorena Tetruashvili, one of the advisers to the patriarch. Although not holding any formal position within the Church hierarchy, she is believed to hold a strong sway over the archbishops and the patriarch himself. (DF watch)

Fire injures one Georgian in Athens, Greece

A Georgian woman has been injured as a result of a fire in Athens, Greece. As the head of the Georgian migrants’ information center, Avtandil Giunashvili, has told IPN, the fire occurred on April 16 in the Calatia municipality. A 72-year old woman died as a result. An old man and the Georgian woman also were in the house. The woman worked as an assistant for the family.

According to Giunashvili, Georgian citizen Nato Chanturia remains hospitalized. Her health condition is critical but stable.

The head of the Georgian migrants’ information center visited the hospital to see the injured Georgian citizen. Family relative Giorgi Dididze has informed him that Nato Chanturia’s family demands assistance, as all the documents necessary for her registration in hospital have been destroyed. (ipn)