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The News in Brief

Friday, January 10
By Liza Mchedlidze

United National Movement demands that CEC bans temporary IDs

United National Movement leaders Tina Bokuchava and Levan Bezhashvili demand that CEC bans issuing ID cards without chips to prevent electoral fraud. At the briefing, UNM leaders explained their demand to Election Administration of Georgia that the Government officials are aware of fewer chances of winning elections and allowing people who are not comfortable with having chips on their IDs due to their religious views to be issued a month lasting paper document is an excuse to electoral fraud.

According to UNM leaders, the government is trying to ‘take society back to the Paper ID Era’:

“Tea Tsulukiani approved a new regulation. The government realizes they do not have people’s trust and support and is now trying to develop new mechanisms for electoral fraud. No. 98 of the Minister of Justice stipulates that an ID card may be issued to citizens who refuse to obtain an electronic ID (ID) because of their beliefs. According to the order, in such a case, the citizen must submit a document certifying his / her religious affiliation. The validity of the ID issued in such a manner is 1 month. This decision was made by Tea Tsulukiani. All of this means that the Government is planning on frauding elections.”

Levan Bezhashvili questioned the necessity of printing ‘unprotected’ and laminated papers with non-biometrical pictures instead of issuing highly protected IDs without chips, adjusted to biometric parameters. She also asked who will issue official documents confirming persons’ religious beliefs.

At the briefing, Tina Bokuchava recalled Tea Tsulukiani’s statement made in March 2019 regarding the Paper IDs. According to the UNM leader, Tea Tsulukiani stated that this type of ID is not trustworthy and there are possibilities of easing the process of issuing fake versions of them.

United National Movement leaders promised that they will not allow Bidzina Ivanishvili to ‘steal’ the parliamentary elections from people.

Georgian National Communications Commission fines ‘Obiektivi’ for broadcasting in Russian

The Georgian Communications Commission warned ‘Obiektivi’ about the non-state language broadcast and ordered it to be removed immediately from the program. The commission made its decision on January 9, following a complaint by the Media Development Fund.

According to the Commission, two Russian programs were aired on the broadcasting network without Georgian subtitles.