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Compiled by Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Friday, September 11
Mountainous regions ask for restoration of benefits

Rezonansi reports that the inhabitants of mountainous regions are asking for a restoration of the preferential benefits Parliament abolished four years ago. At that time Government members said that they were abolishing these benefits because there was no agreed list of which villages or small towns should be assisted. They also said that Parliament was planning to adopt a new law to address this, but this issue has still not been settled.

Under previous legislation the mountainous regions were given various benefits to help them resist hard economic conditions. The Christian Democrats are planning to raise this matter in Parliament, saying that the authorities are acting extremely irresponsible towards the residents of mountainous regions. They will demand that the Government restore all the benefits the mountainous regions enjoyed previously.

Christian Democrat MP Giorgi Akhvlediani has said that: “People in mountainous regions live in very tough conditions. Instead of helping them, our Government displays no interest in their problems. We are planning to appeal to Parliament to increase teachers’ salaries in these regions by 20 % and lower the pension age there from 65 to 60.” Independent MP Gia Tsagareishvili considers that this matter can be easily resolved and Parliament will address it in the near future.

Christian Democrats propose second chamber

Akhali Taoba reports that the leader of the Christian Democrats, Giorgi Targamadze, gave a special briefing to Parliament on September 8 at which he proposed reforms. He suggested that the Georgian Parliament should consist of two chambers rather than one. “The vertical model of authority distribution is not profitable of Georgia’s development. Some significant changes should be made in this respect. First of all, this model must be replaced by a horizontal one. local government development is also of fundamental importance,” stated Targamadze, adding that the Christian Democrats support the idea of directly electing Mayors.

Targamadze also talked about police involvement in political issues, saying that this should no longer take place and the police must not execute Government directives. He is demanding that the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Security Service be independent of each other.

Georgian citizens arrested in Moscow

Alia reports that two Georgian citizens have been arrested in Moscow. The Russian capital’s Police Department states that they have been detained on suspicion of robbing a businessman. It is said that the Georgians attacked the businessman and stole a bag containing 500,000 roubles, but despite trying to hide the police arrested them.

One of the robbers was wounded during the incident and has been taken to hospital. The second is now in custody. The Police Department has not given their names.