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The News in Brief

Friday, June 29
Cultural Heritage Agency head returns from Petersburg

The Head of the Cultural Heritage Protection Agency returned from Petersburg today. Nikoloz Vacheishvili attended the session of the World`s Cultural Heritage Committee of UNESCO. The Georgian delegation presented the documents to the members of the committee to convince international experts that the restoration of the Bagrati Temple in Kutaisi was conducted properly. The committee took a decision that UNESCO would return to the discussion of the Bagrati issue next year, but before that the Georgian side has asked the organization to send an enlarged group of international experts to monitor the restoration of Bagrati Temple, which is on the list of the UNESCO cultural heritage. The restoration of the temple was suspended under the demand of the Patriarch of Georgia, which caused controversy over whether the monument would be removed from the UNESCO list due to its improper restoration. (Rustavi 2)

Nationwide entrance exams begin

Seventeen examination centers in Georgia’s twelve cities were opened for nation-wide entrance, master`s and teachers` examinations yesterday. The registration began at 8 a.m. Video cameras are installed in all test rooms to observe the process of the exams. 80,000 people will pass tests this year. The final results of the examinations will be published on August 25.

The entrants will take tests in the Georgian language and literature.

In difference from previous years, the entrants can mark 20 possible faculties in various universities instead of seven.

1,300 proctors are observing the process of examinations.

Examination tests were delivered from police departments to all examination centers by the convoy of criminal police officers at 7 a.m. All examination center has a medical center to provide first aid to those, who may suddenly have health problems. (Rustavi 2)

NATO Secretary General's visit to Georgia is to be scheduled by September

The NATO Secretary General's visit to Georgia is to be scheduled by September, Vice Prime Ministe,r Giorgi Baramidze said after a meeting with NATO Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow. The meeting was held in a closed format and lasted for an hour.

Vershbow said that after the meeting they discussed NATO-Georgia relations. According to him, he thinks Georgia's NATO membership is an optimistic issue. However, the continuation of reforms in defense, political and economic areas is necessary. Vice Prime Minister Giorgi Baramidze said that today's meeting was more proof that Georgia steadily stands on the way to NATO membership. According to him, all important issues of NATO-Georgia relations were discussed at the meeting. Alexander Vershbow has recently arrived in Georgia. He has already met with the Speaker of Parliament, David Bakardze. He will hold a meeting at Tbilisi State University, after which he will meet with the opposition.Vershbow will take part in the conference organized by the Ministry of Defence in Batumi. (IPN)

Young members of Georgian Dream rallied at MIA

Members of the youth wing of the opposition coalition Georgian Dream rallied outside the Ministry of Internal Affairs today. The protestors were objecting to the seizure of satellite antennas of the Global TV on the grounds of the prosecutor`s office demand, which accused the company of vote-buying this pre-election period. The protestors brought satellite antennas symbolically outside the ministry. They were demanding unbiased discussion of the case at the law court. (Rustavi 2)

Heavy precipitation to last until July

Weather forecasters say the increased water level in Georgia`s rivers and a sharp fall in temperature is expected in the western regions of the country. The danger of floods is also forecasted. Bad weather, heavy precipitation and low temperature will be maintained in the country until July. (Rustavi 2)