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The News in Brief

Tuesday, November 5
By Liza Mchedlidze

Tusheti National Park is 6th most endangered in 2020’s watch list of 25 sites at risk

World Monuments Fund (WMF) announced a watch list of 25 sites that are at risk from threats like urbanization, political turmoil or natural disasters.

Aside from Tusheti National Park, the list also reads the Sacred Valley of the Incas in Peru and Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris which got burnt down in April 2019.

"We often take our most treasured heritage sites for granted," said Bénédicte de Montlaur, the fund's CEO. "Sometimes it's not until they are put at risk that we realize the importance they have in constructing our identities as individuals, communities, or citizens of a country."

World Monuments Fund (WMF)’s website publishes the purpose of the list and detailed information about the problems in Tusheti. The page reads:

"In recent years the rehabilitation of the country’s infrastructure has become a national priority in Georgia, as a means to improve the country’s global economic competitiveness. But the proposed construction of a new road through Tusheti presents a conundrum for Tushetians: while improved and safe connectivity would bring many benefits to the population, it also risks jeopardizing investment in sustainable tourism in favor of mass tourism development. Many have decided to oppose construction, and in 2017 an online petition collected more than 12,000 signatures. Instead, many believe that improvements to the conditions of the roads in the lowlands should be a higher priority than the construction of a new highway."

WMF wrote that through the 2020 World Monuments Watch, World Monuments Fund attempts to provide to the growth of sustainable tourism in Tusheti. It encourages the revival of traditional skills and the long-term development of the area for the best interest of its inhabitants.

The 25 sites chosen out of 250 nominations will join the fund’s watch members list recognized since 1996. Their supporters will compete for a total of $1 million in conservation funds provided by American Express and the Stavros Niarchos Fund.

Patriarchate of Georgia’s Press Secretary reacts to the initiative of Holy Synod meeting to be broadcasted in live

Head of the Patriarchate of Georgia’s press center, Andria Jaghmaidze states that live broadcast of Holy Synod meeting is ‘absolutely impossible.’

The initiative of the meeting to go public belongs to Former Metropolitan of Chkondidi, Petre Tsaava, who got fired from the position of the Archbishop.

“Unless The meeting of Holy Synod goes live for everyone to watch, anti-orthodox people who are hiding behind the church will always try to lie to people and sin. Discreditation of the Church will not have an end unless this meeting goes public.”

Petre Tsaava states that this practice already exists and it is not forbidden. According to him, Crete's Meeting was broadcasted for a few days live.

Patriarchate’s Press Secretary Andria Jaghmaidze addressed the initiative and said that publicizing the Inside business of the Church will cause many confusions and disagreements among the people as they do not carry ‘church mentality’, therefore this initiative was dismissed.

Ivanishvili: "I am ready to give ‘Panorama Tbilisi’ project to an interested businessman at any stage"

The Founder of Georgian Dream, Bidzina Ivanishvili told Entrepreneur that he is ready to give ‘Panorama Tbilisi’ project to an interested businessman, he also added that the is ready to offer a 30 percent discount to a buyer.

According to Ivanishvili, ‘Panorama Tbilisi’ will become a world-prominent with its exclusiveness.

‘Panorama combines three unique hotels with different advantages. First will be in the center of Tbilisi, on the Freedom Square, which will be suitable for important and high-income visitors. The second hotel will be oriented towards business tourism, high-quality modern conference halls will be built unlike other conference halls in Georgia.’ He also mentioned how the EBRD conference held in Tbilisi was almost canceled because of not having a suitable conference hall in Tbilisi for such an important event. Ivanishvili sees the solution to this problem in ‘Tbilisi Panorama’ second hotel:

‘This issue will be entirely solved with this second hotel, which will produce new possibilities to host important conferences and meetings’

‘In general, the rental rate for building conference rooms is not very high and the profit is not so high either, but we know that our country needs it’ says Bidzina Ivanishvili, who also noted that a very unusual aquarium will be placed which will give this hotel even more uniqueness.

The third ‘Panorama Tbilisi’ hotel will be built on Tabori Hill with golf courses. According to Ivanishvili, ‘this hotel as well is suitable for the rich.’

"It is clear that this project will not be as rentable compared to its value. If it’s built correspondingly to the general plan and concept I will have to give a buyer a 10-30 percent discount, exactly like the Tskaltubo project."

Bidzina Ivanishvili states that his main interest is the development of Georgian Tourism.