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The News in Brief

Tuesday, November 16
President visited Akhaltsikhe

President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili arrived in the city of Akhalkalaki yesterday and met with local people in the city’s main square. The President congratulated the city’s residents on the construction of a new motorway to the region.

Saakashvili said it was a road, which served for the unification of Georgia. “This is a very happy and a historic day for Georgia. Three important roads were constructed in the past few centuries. The first road was a military road, which served for the destruction of the independence of Georgia and the Caucasus; the second road was the Roki tunnel, the function of which was to sever ties between this and other regions. That road affected historic connections then; this is the third road, which is the complete contradiction of the Roki tunnel, because this is the road of Georgia’s unification, the road leading to the liberation of Georgia. I congratulate you on this day,” Saakashvili said.
(Rustavi 2)

Georgia to Open Representative Office in Canada

Georgia’s Representative Office in Canada will be opened on November 19, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nino Kalandadze stated at yesterday’s regular briefing.

According to Kalandadze, so far Georgia hasn’t had a representative body in Canada and the diplomatic coverage of the country was realised from Washington DC.

“MOFA continues new mission openings abroad. On November 19 our representative will leave for Ottawa to open another Representative Office,” stated Kalandadze.

Juvenile diversion and Mediation program launched

Juvenile convicts will be able to avoid serving their sentences in prisons and instead perform social work as an alternate form of legal punishment. The new law on Juvenile Diversion and Mediation came into force yesterday. First Deputy Prosecutor, Davit Sakvarelidze reported the details of the new law in the judiciary to journalists.

“The Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia carries out the policy of liberal justice. Within this policy, a new programme of Juvenile Diversion and Mediation has been launched. The programme implies diversion of juvenile convicts, who have committed less series crimes or a first crime offence to avoid imprisonment, however, the convict will be obliged to sign a document by which they will take a civil obligation before the injured party and society and perform social work,” Davit Sakvarelidze said.
(Rustavi 2)

Georgian delegation leaves for Malaysia

A Georgian governmental delegation will leave for Malaysia to attend the trials of the two Georgian citizens, who were arrested on drug smuggling charges several weeks ago and who are facing death sentences.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, Nino Kalandadze announced at yesterday's briefing that the delegation would consist of officials of the foreign ministry and the prosecutor’s office.

Kalandadze said the government of Georgia had managed to obtain official contact with the Malaysian side. The goal of the government is to arrive in the country in time, before the start of the trials.

Two Georgian citizens, Darejan Kokhtashvili and Babutsa Gordadze were arrested for illegal migration and drug smuggling a few weeks ago.
(Rustavi 2)

Only underdeveloped countries have tinted car windows

President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili spoke about the new traffic rules at the opening of Samtskhe-Javakheti new highway.

Saakashvili was driving his mother, Giuli Alasania’s car with seat belts on. Saakashvili told journalists, this car never had tinted windows.

‘This is my mother’s car and it never had tinted windows. When the new law was introduced I thought about whether it was necessary, but if we think deeply, only underdeveloped countries have tinted windows. Nothing like this happens in developed countries. It is not in fashion or a good sign,’ Mikheil Saakashvili said.

Georgians in France Fire in stable condition

2 Georgians, Nestan Kostava and Teimuraz Arabiani, injured in a fire in the eastern French city of Dijon, are in a stable condition, according to the Georgian consul in France, Giorgi Tsikarishvili .

Tsikarishvili reported that the injured Georgian citizens were discharged from hospital yesterday.

The BBC reports that seven people were killed and 11 seriously injured in the fire. One person died after jumping from the seventh floor of the building, while the other six died from the effects of smoke inhalation.

More than 130 people were evacuated from the building, many also suffering from smoke inhalation.

An investigation into the cause of blaze has been launched.