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The News in Brief

Monday, October 16
Georgian MFA on Catalonia Developments

Georgia fully supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Kingdom of Spain and rejects unilateral declarations of independence, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in its October 12 statement on recent developments in Catalonia.

“We express our strong belief, that the crisis will be settled through dialogue and the Spanish government will defend the constitutional order and, therefore, guarantee the rights and freedoms of all of citizens,” the Ministry also noted.

“We support territorial integrity of Spain, reject unilateral actions and hope the crisis will be resolved according to Constitution of Spain,” Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili wrote in his twitter post on October 12.

President pardons actor convicted of drug crime

The President has pardoned actor Lasha Kurtanidze who had been serving sentence for drug crime. Kurtanidze's lawyer Malkhaz Salakaia confirmed this information.

The President pardoned Kurtanidze together with other convicts two days ago.

Former TV presenter Levan Rostoshvili, who was detained together with Kurtanidze, is still serving his sentence. It is not clear whether he had asked the President to pardon him.

Rostoshvili and Kurtanidze were arrested for illegal purchase and possession of drugs.

Former prison authorities face torture charges

Two former officials of the previous government of Georgia have been detained for alleged degrading and inhuman treatment committed against 14 people at a temporary detention isolator.

The Chief Prosecutor’s Office announced today that former head and one of the inspectors of the Interior Ministry’s Kvareli temporary detention isolator in eastern Georgia were detained for the wrongdoings they allegedly committed back in 2011.

According to the Prosecutor’s Office, in May of 2011 some of opposition activists held a series of protest rallies in front of the Georgian Public Broadcaster building in Tbilisi. The Office said that in order to avoid large-scale street demonstrations, police held several special operations to detain opposition activists and make sure the rallies did not continue.

The Office also said that 14 people were detained during these events and they were sent to the Kvareli temporary detention isolator to serve an administrative detention term, from 30 to 45 days.

Prosecutors said that the head of the facility, together with an inspector of the same isolators, would commit degrading and inhuman treatment against these 14 opposition activists on a daily basis. They would allegedly physically and verbally abuse the detained people, would not let them sleep, would make them stand for hours in their cells, would not give them enough food, would make them say bad things about opposition leaders, would also make them take their t-shirts off, clean the floors of the cells with them and put them back on.

An investigation into the allegations is continuing and if proven wrong, the two former officials will have to spend from four to six years behind bars.