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The News in Brief

Wednesday, July 13
Alexey Venedictove: Georgia is a European country from tourism point of view

From the point of view of tourism, Georgia is a European country, from the point of view of politics it is a post soviet country. Alexei Venedictov, editor-in-chief of Echo Moskvy said after visiting Georgia, GHN reports.

"I myself feel that "Mr. Saakashvili and his team are trying to establish a Singapore in Georgia. The Asian Singapore where everything is convenient for the citizen and for a tourist unless he tries to enter politics and power. As soon as someone will try to create politics in Georgia... then "comrade" Saakashvili will find a reason not to allow this. And in this sense if in Georgia is a democracy it is only a Singaporean one.

"In this respect there are problems for the opposition, for businessmen financing the opposition and for the intelligence services busy with phone tapping. Nevertheless all this is denied by the authorities and they are not admitting having an Asian democracy.”

He continued: ”As for the Constitutional changes I would say that those amendments which now enter the constitution, are making the Presidential republic "half-Presidential" or "half-parliamentarian".

According to the constitutional amendments the weight will be shifted on to the Parliament and the former President can now become a Prime Minster. (GHN)

MICE tourism in Georgia

Georgia`s National Agency of Tourism is beginning to work towards the development of a new direction in Georgia`s tourism sector - the MICE tourism. MICE is an acronym for the Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions tourism segment. This direction of tourism focuses on organized corporative and professional tours.

MICE tourism is a well-planned tour system of events, scheduled in detail in advance. The head of the National Agency of tourism of Georgia, Maia Sidamonidze will report the details of the new direction in Georgia`s tourism development very shortly. (Rustavi 2)

Two Georgians sent to Turkish prison

Two Georgian women were sent to a Turkish prison for six years and three months for burying a 30 year-old Georgian national alive. The two were the members of an organized crime gang of 20 persons with Georgian and Ukrainian members, which operated in Turkey and were involved in prostitution and trafficking. They decided to punish the young woman for only one reason - she refused to become a prostitute for the benefit of their business.

The Turkish media has released the photos of the crime; and apparently have the video depicting the horrible crime also exists, but the police abstain from publishing it yet.

Luckily, the victim of the violence survived, but the criminals used the videos and the pictures to threaten others, who refused to agree on their terms.

The group was arrested as a result of one of the largest special operations conducted by Turkey`s police during the past few years.

The identity of the convicts and the victim are being held in secret. The Georgian consulate in Turkey is working to obtain more information about the crime. (Rustavi 2)

Disease Control Center warns citizens on Anthrax

The National Centre of Disease Control of Georgia is issuing recommendations protecting human health from anthrax after the centre registered 20 cases of infection during the past month.

The centre recommends that citizens buy meat at markets, where the product undergo a special laboratory examination; to farmers they advise not to touch their cattle by hand and use gloves during land cultivation works. The centre also warns citizens not to use the meat of infected cattle as food. (Rustavi 2)

Archers return from Italy after scandal

The scandal, which began at the Archery World Championship in Italy, continues. The team of Georgian archers returned to Georgia this morning after being denied victory in controversial circumstances. The scandal began after the juries accepted the protest of Italian sportsmen and demanded a repeat tour, in which the Italians were declared winners and Georgians were deprived of the title.

Experts however are refusing to rule out the possibility of the women archers keeping the title of champions. If they are successful in their appeal, the Georgian team of archers will be granted four places at next year's Olympic Games in London. (Rustavi 2)