The messenger logo

The News in Brief

Monday, December 11
Georgia ‘Closely Monitoring’ Jerusalem Developments, Foreign Ministry Says

“We have looked carefully at the statement made by the President of our strategic partner, the United States of America, regarding Jerusalem,” and “are closely monitoring the developments as this issue is being widely discussed internationally, including at the United Nations” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia said on December 7.

“Georgia supports the efforts of the international community aimed at the peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which should be achieved through an agreement based on dialogue,” the Ministry also wrote, adding that “Considering this, we are carefully following the developments and will continue consultations with our partners.

The statement came shortly after Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili rejected the appeal by a ruling party MP Shota Shalelashvili that Georgia should support the United States decision to move its Israel embassy to Jerusalem and recognize it as the country’s capital.

The Prime Minister said then that the country would “state its position on the basis of its national interests, considering the international situation and the threats that exist in the region.”

Catastrophic mandarin harvest deals heavy blow to Abkhazia’s exports

Abkhazia’s export of mandarins and other produce has plummeted by 2.7 times, dealing a heavy blow to the breakaway republic’s economy.

Local media blame the bad harvest on the spread of brown marmorated stink bug, which has devastated crops also in Georgia.

The separatist agriculture ministry estimates the citrus harvest this year to about 16,000 tons. Compared to last year’s 27,000 tons, this is nothing short of a catastrophic yield on produce that is mainly exported to Russia. With the emergence of pests, next year’s harvest will likely be even smaller.

Russian media cite data from the customs service in Sochi indicating that in the beginning of the season, tangerine imports from Abkhazia to Russia dropped 2.7 times compared to the same period in 2016.

According to the customs press service, about 1,500 tons of tangerines have been registered at the Adler motor checkpoint this year, while the same period last year this figure reached 4,000 tons.

However, mandarin demand is especially high during the New Year holidays and Sokhumi hopes that demand in the middle of December will increase.

Exports of other subtropical fruits, like feijoa (pineapple guava) and persimmon have both also reached rock bottom after tumbling by about two thirds, local state news agency Abkhaz inform reports.
(DF watch)

Tbilisi main Christmas tree to be lit on December 15

The main Christmas tree of Georgia’s capital Tbilisi will be lit at 20:00 on December 15, - Sophio Khuntsaria, head of Tbilisi City Hall Culture Civil Service has told reporters.

According to Khuntsaria, three locations will host concerts in Tbilisi on New Year ’s Eve. The locations are Gldani, Varketili and Old Tbilisi districts.

The concerts will begin at 23:00.

A New Year town is also planned be arranged at Dedaena Park from December 24 till January 7.