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The Week in Brief

Friday, May 2
After warning it would respond with force if Georgia invades Abkhazia, Russia deployed another thousand peacekeepers into the breakaway region.

Tbilisi said it will block Russian membership in the World Trade Organization unless Moscow backtracks on its move to formalize links with separatist Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

The nine-party opposition coalition demanded the government crack down on political intimidation, sack the Central Election Commission chief and give more time to review voter rolls. The coalition said all three are necessary for fair elections.

Leading television stations Rustavi 2 and Mze reinstated coverage of the nine-party opposition coalition’s campaign, after a mutual boycott just weeks before this month’s parliamentary elections.

In an initiative to boost Georgia’s anemic birthrate, the Patriarch baptized one hundred babies born to particularly productive mothers.