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The News in Brief

Friday, October 4
US Department of State comments on borderization

The U.S. Department of State has commented on the installation of barbwire fences along the administrative boundary line of the occupied Tskhinvali region. Deputy spokesperson Marie Harf answered journalists' questions at a daily press briefing.

“We note with concern the continued and increasing activities by Russian security forces to erect fences and other physical barriers along the administrative boundary lines of the occupied territories in Georgia. This borderization is inconsistent with Russia’s international commitments and Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders. Borderization also damages trust between the sides, creates hardship for Georgian citizens on either side of the boundary line, and we would call on the Russian Federation to remove the barriers and to address issues related to the conflict in Georgia at the Geneva International Discussion.” Harf said. (Rustavi 2)

OSCE monitoring mission to observe voting in prisons

The OSCE monitoring mission will observe the voting process at penitentiary facilities, the Ministry of Corrections and Legal Assistance has announced. Deputy Ministers Sopio Japaridze and Besik Devdariani met with OSCE representatives Elissavet Karadiannidou and Robin Seaward. The OSCE representatives informed the deputy ministers about the observer mission's activities. The ministry plans to meet local and international organizations and the diplomatic corps in the future to fully inform them about the current situation in Georgian prisons. (InterPressNews)

Georgian Defense Minister to discuss NATO integration in Slovenia

The Georgian Defense Minister will participate at the South-Eastern European Defense Ministerial. Georgian Defense Minister Irakli Alasania has left for Slovenia to attend the ministerial.

Georgia has been an observer in the South-Eastern European Defense Ministerial since 2006.

Slovenia's ministerial meeting will focus on security, peace in the region and the integration of regional countries into NATO.

Alasania will hold bilateral meetings and in particular will meet with U.S Deputy Secretary of Defense Evelyn Farkas and Slovenian Defense Minister Roman Jakic. (Trend)

Georgian President pardons 18,000 probationers and persons with criminal records

President Mikheil Saakashvili has signed a decree pardoning all probationers and persons with criminal records.

Head of the Presidential Administration Andro Barnovi held a press conference on Wednesday to announce that on August 19, 2013, the president pardoned all probationers and persons who have a criminal record.

"The decree concerns up to 18,000 people who have appealed to the president for pardons. The president has today signed an appropriate act that is currently in the process of becoming law." Barnovi noted. (Trend)

Response commission for villages near the breakaway regions created

A special commission created by the Georgian government to respond to the needs of residents of villages surrounding the breakaway regions, has begun work.

Representatives of several agencies will participate in the commission's work. The Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure and the Office of the State Minister for Reintegration will manage the commission's activity.

"At a governmental meeting it was decided to create a commission that will study the needs of the population living along the border." State Minister for Reintegration Paata Zakareishvili said.

According to Zakareishvili, data already collected on this issue shows it is necessary to create a temporary special commission.

Establishing a water supply, restoration of rural roads and other issues are part of the commission's work. (Trend)

Tbilisoba to take place October 4th-6th

Tbilisoba will take place this year on October 4th-6th. According to Tbilisi City Hall, various cultural events are planned. Tbilisoba will open on October 4th at the Jansugh Kakhidze garden with a band competition. The main events will take place on October 5th-6th. On Gorgasali Square, grape pressing will take place. A dramatized music performance of "Pirosmani" will be staged for children in Abanotubani. A concert by the dance ensembles “Rokva”, “Chokhosnebi” and the children's group "Little Drummers" will also be held.

Chess and backgammon tournaments, a fruit festival, an auto show and an exhibition of paintings are also planned.

A demonstration of the Georgian martial art “Shavparosnebi”, a crafts market and concerts by the bands “Egari” and “Bani” will be held in Abanotubani. A concert commemorating the 75th birthday of Otar Ramishvili will be held on European Square.

On October 6th, an awards ceremony of honorary Tbilisians will be held at the Tbilisi History Museum. (Karvasla). (InterPressNews)