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The News in Brief

Tuesday, January 20
Patriarch baptizes on Theophany

On January 19 the Orthodox Church celebrated the feast known as Theophany or Epiphany. Traditionally on the eve of the feast all Orthodox Churches bless water and distribute it to the faithful. The Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia, His Holiness and Beatitude Ilia II, conducted the ceremony at Holy Trinity Cathedral on Sunday.

On this day, the celebration of the baptism of Christ in the Jordan, the blessed water acquires the grace manifest in the river on that day and remains fresh and drinkable for a whole year or longer, unlike ordinary water. The Church recommends drinking blessed water when suffering ordeals and ailments, and some devout Christians observe a fast on Theophany’s eve.

On the eve of the feast the Catholicos-Patriarch held a baptism ceremony in Holy Trinity Cathedral at which 620 newborns were baptized. The Godchildren of the Patriarch are children whose parents responded to the Patriarch’s initiative in this matter, every third and further child of parents who married in church.
(The Messenger)

PM’s health condition stable

Official information regarding the health of the Georgian Prime Minister has been released by his Press Service. The Georgian PM was taken to Tbilisi Republic Hospital on January 17 and was placed in an observation ward. Stationary treatment will be provided for several days under Georgian doctors` supervision. The PM`s condition is stable now.

The Premier underwent a thorough health examination in Germany at the beginning of January. German doctors diagnosed nephritis caused by an infection, and prescribed a four-week treatment.
(The Messenger)

Georgian students hold rally for Ukraine

Georgian students held a rally in support of Ukraine in Tbilisi on January 18. The students assembled outside the Ukrainian Embassy, hoping to stop ‘Russian aggression’ against Ukraine. The students hung flags and posters outside the Embassy.

About fifty citizens attended the rally. The participants stated that Ukraine is Georgia`s friend, and therefore they were expressing their protest against Russia and their support for, and solidarity with, Ukraine.
(The Messenger)

Importers of Rio Grande hail their product

The scandal around Rio Grande coffee continues after independent laboratory analysis has shown that the product is harmful to health.

The Director General of the Rafael Ontini Trading Company, Rafi Mekhchyan, which imports the product from Armenia, held a briefing yesterday and said that the coffee has undergone numerous analyses in various international laboratories and has obtained certificates. He said that the coffee considered dangerous to health, might have been falsely labelled as Rio Grande.
(Rustavi 2)

New ski run opens in Adjara region

A second ski track has been opened in the Khulo district of Adjara. The run, located 1,500 kilometres above sea level, is in Kednebi village, where children from eight to fifteen years old are being trained at a ski school.

The development of the infrastructure of the village of Kednebi is intended. Several new cottages and hotels are scheduled to open there.

Levan Varshalomidze, the Chair of the Adjaran Government, has said that a further new ski resort will be opened at the Goderdzi pass soon. The resort will seriously compete with the well-established Bakuriani and Gudauri.
(Rustavi 2)

Swine disease spreads near Abkhazia`s border region

Swine disease has spread in the Southern region of Russia bordering Georgia`s occupied territory of Abkhazia. Pigs have died of African fever in Stavropol, Sochi and the surrounding regions, the head of the Veterinary Department of the separatist Abkhazian Government, Erik Arshba, has announced. He said the disinfection barriers at the river Psou are not sufficient to prevent the spread of the disease.

The Georgian Ministry of Agriculture also confirms that the danger of spreading the disease Sochi`s surrounding regions is real, however, no official document has been sent from the Russian side as yet. They say Georgia is prepared for preventive measures.
(Rustavi 2)