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The News in Brief

Monday, October 21
Over 3.5 voters recorded in Georgia for participation in Georgian presidential election

The total number of voters for the Georgian presidential election scheduled for October 27, 2013, is 3,537,719, press-speaker of the Georgian CEC Ekaterina Azarashvili said.

According to the CEC, about 48,458 Georgian citizens abroad will be able to participate in the election. Around 52 polling stations were opened for them in different countries.

Meanwhile, the process of printing of ballot papers will begin from October 21.

The ballot papers will be printed in ten print shops of Tbilisi. This process will be observed by the CEC members and the representatives of seven NGOs.

Rallies against Sochi Olympics participation

Rallies against the ‘creeping occupation’ and the Sochi Winter Olympics continue in Georgia. Saturday, there were protests in 25 different cities and towns all over the country.

Despite the rain, youth protested in Batumi, a city on the Black Sea shores, in the evening. Participants came with banners shouting ‘No to Sochi’s Bloody Olympics.’ Youth called on the government to change its decision to take part in the Olympics.

A rally was also held in Telavi, where students and others gathered at the theater and symbolically put up barbed wire, which Russian soldiers have recently placed around the de facto border with the region South Ossetia. They also brought posters that said ‘No to Sochi Olympics! No to Occupation.’

Another gathering took place in Kutaisi, where participants said that Georgia’s participation in the Olympics will be a shame. It was raining in Kutaisi as well, so participants were holding umbrellas and posters together in the cold weather. “NATO is our choice” one of the posters read.

Rallies were also held in Sagarejo, Tkibuli, Telavi, Khobi, Zugdidi, Rustavi and Gori.

Participants called on people to be more active and sign a petition against Georgia’s participation in the Olympics. The petition has so far gathered over 25 000 signatures.
(Democracy & Freedom Watch)

New president to have office at government's chancellery

The new president of Georgia, who will be elected on October 27th, will have the office in the building of the government's chancellery - Chief of Staff of the Chancellery, Maia Tskitishvili announced today. She also explained that the fate of the current residence of the president has not been decided yet. She did not rule out some of the ministries would take office in the building of the president’s palace in Avlabari district.

`The final decision has not been taken yet. There were various versions, but it is too early to discuss this issue. President of Georgia and its administration is still working in that office. We should wait for president`s elections and only afterwards discuss the date of the president`s palace,` Tskitishvili said.
(Rustavi 2)

New Georgian Television on airs

The new “Georgian Television” has opened in Georgia, first launched on October 14 in test mode. Though the television has a general broadcasting license, which allows it the ability to prepare news programs, currently there are only entertaining-cognitive programs in its programming.

Director General of the Channel Giorgi Zhorzholiani says that the tv station is going to be launched at full capacity starting from November.

Georgian Television goes on Turksat via Black Sea Sat (B.S.SAT) company. According to Zhorzholiani, their broadcasting will be available for the customers of Silknet in a few days. The Director of the station has made a written application to the following companies - Aieti, Magtisat and Global TV, with the request of transmitting the station’s broadcasting.

Five-point storm in Poti strands Maltese ferry

A ferry under the Maltese flag was cast ashore in the Poti port. The vessel left the port with 34 cars but the storm cast the ferry ashore, the port's administration told Trend.

None of the 16 crew members was injured. The crew consists of two Russian and 14 Ukrainian citizens.

After the five-point storm calms down, the work on the removal of the vessel from the shoal will begin.

The five-point storm also seriously damaged the waterfront boulevard of Batumi.

Several bungalows were demolished and the boulevard was damaged there.

The work on cleaning up the territory has begun since morning.

Weather to brighten up in Georgia from 21 October

The weather will brighten up in Georgia from October 21. According to the Forecast Bureau of the National Environmental Agency, bad weather will last in Georgia only for 2 days. Heavy wind is in the forecast in Tbilisi today. It will be raining in most regions of western Georgia and some regions of eastern Georgia. Dry weather will be in western Georgia from 21 October for a week. Air temperature will reach 25 degrees. In eastern Georgia, dry weather will last till 24 October and air temperature will be 22 degrees.

On 24-25 October raining is in the forecast in eastern Georgia, including in Tbilisi. Air temperature will decrease to 18 degrees. The weather service forecasts dry weather on 26-28 October.