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Compiled by Mzia Kupunia
Monday, September 27
Fines on environment pollution increased

The Environment Protection Inspection is starting to carry out strict measures to protect the environment, Sakartvelos Respublika reports. The Minister of Environment Protection and Natural Resources, Goga Khachidze held a special briefing last week and said that the administrative code norms on pollution of environment will be fully activated, imposing financial sanctions for the abovementioned activity. According to the administrative code, corporate persons will be fined with GEL 200 for throwing construction or other kinds of waste into the rivers, or putting them in parks, sports grounds, car parking sites, markets or other places, while official organizations and institutions will be fined with GEL 100. In case of repeated misdimeanours, the corporal persons will be fined with GEL 500 and the judicial ones with GEL 3000. The rules will apply throughout Georgia, according to the Environment Ministry.

Blast near the US embassy was carried out by one person, analyst says US Ambassador to Georgia, John Bass is content with the investigation activities following the explosion near the US Embassy premises in Tbilisi, Rezonansi newspaper reports. A hand made grenade exploded 50 metres from the Embassy on September 23. Nobody was injured as a result of the incident. Analyst in security issues, Irakli Sesiashvili suggested that the US side is also involved in the investigation. “I cannot say if it is being done officially or unofficially, however I am sure that they are involved. It is a very delicate issue and maybe the objective truth will not be revealed at all,” Sesiashvili told Rezonansi, adding that it is “hard” to qualify the incident as a terrorist act. “If it is a terrorist act, it would have had some aim. However this fact have not made any psychological impact neither on the government, nor the society. I support the version that the blast was carried out by one person as a sign of some personal protest or some mental problems,” the Resonansi quoted him as saying.

There was a similar case during President Bush’s visit to Georgia, Sesiashvili said. “An ethnic Armenian citizen of Georgia threw a grenade at him. However this was not done in an organized manner, nobody was standing behind him. I think that this was the case in terms of the recent incident as well,” he suggested “no smart person will do such thing, and if an organized terrorist group does it, it will be done the way that it puts maximal psychological pressure on the Georgian government,” he added. Answering the question if the blast was staged by Russian special agencies to spoil US-Georgian relations and if there is a need to enhance security measures, Sesiashvili said that he does not agree with this version.

“I don’t see any clear cut organized terrorist intentions with some political aims in this case. I see personal negative attitude towards the USA. As for the security, we will not be able to teach security issues to the US. The US embassy is well protected. The fact that the person who perpetrated this crime could not dare to go closer to the embassy building is a proof for this,” Sesiashvili stated.

Ilia II sends a letter to the Russian Patriarch

Georgian Patriarch, Ilia II sent a letter to the Russian Patriarch Kirill for his congratulation letter to Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia on its “independence day” - September 19, 24 Saati newspaper reports. In the letter, Ilia II pointed out that the Church should not follow the politicians and the political processes and expressed hope that it will stand on the side of justice, which will promote establishing friendly relations between the two countries. “The media reported allegations that you sent a congratulation letter to the self-proclaimed president of South Ossetia on 20th anniversary of ‘independence’. This fact caused a sharp negative reaction in our parish and the entire Georgian society. This fact is very damaging as this action means that you support the violent separatist regime existing on Georgia’s historical land and recognize its illegally declared ‘independence’,” Ilia II’s letter reads “We recall personally you and your Church’s support towards Georgia and towards Georgia’s canonic Church borders recognition issue. So, the abovementioned step was absolutely unexpected. We think that the Church should not be involved in political processes. We hope that in the future you will stand on the side of justice, which will promote establishing neighbourly relations between our countries,” it continues.