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The News in Brief

Wednesday, June 8
If I see that people no longer believe in me, I will go away -

“If I see in the elections that people no longer believe in me, I will go away,” - former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili told reporters. According to him, in that case he will return to the life he wanted.

"I had a very interesting meeting with the National Forum two weeks ago. They were assuring me that I should not support anyone. It is difficult to define what their results would have been without me.

“However, for some reason it seems to me now that I have a special role, because I still feel the confidence of society in me. This may be a false sense, but I will see it in the elections. Now I am driven by the sense of obligation towards my society, but if I see in the elections that people no longer believe in me, I will go away.

“I can assure you that if I am supported by less than half of the voters, I will return to the life that I wanted," said Ivanishvili. (IPN)

Femicide bill rejected by Georgian parliament’s human rights committee

The human rights committee in Parliament on Monday rejected a proposal by two MPs from the majority faction to make femicide a crime.

It would have taken seven votes for the committee to approve the draft. Only three voted for it; two from the Georgian Dream party and one from the Republican Party.

No-one voted against the bill, but during the discussion, majority MPs Soso Manjavidze, Dimitri Lortkpanidze and Gedevan Popkhadze did not support it.

Clergy from the Georgian Orthodox Church attended Monday’s session and strongly criticized the proposal.

The bill was introduced by MPs Tamar Kordzaia (pictured) and Tamar Khidasheli and is an amendment to the Criminal Code. It would define femicide as a premeditated murder of a woman based on her gender and set punishment for femicide as a particularly severe crime.

The bill also proposes to define it as aggravating circumstances if the crimes seriously or lightly injuring, beating, forcing or threatening are based on gender.

The bill’s explanatory note explains that in 2015, there were launched 26 investigations for murder or attempted murder of women. Two women died as a result of domestic violence. In 2014, 33 women were murdered. (df WATCH)

Defense Minister Visits Afghanistan

Defence Minister Tina Khidasheli is visiting Georgian troops serving in Afghanistan as part of the NATO-led Resolute Support mission.

During the visit, which is her third one in Afghanistan since becoming Defence Minister in May 2015, she met deputy commander of the Resolute Support Mission Lt. Gen. Sandy Storrie, as well as the acting defence minister of Afghanistan.

On Sunday she participated in a ceremony to dedicate Georgian fallen soldiers’ memorial at the Resolute Support mission headquarters in Kabul.

The memorial bears the names of the 31 Georgian soldiers who died while serving in the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan. The most recent fatality occurred in September 2015.

With 861 soldiers Georgia was the third largest troop contributor to the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan after the United States (6,954 troops) and Germany (980 troops) as of end-May.

The Georgian troops, whose duties focus on security and rapid reaction force, are deployed in Kabul, at Bagram Airbase, and Camp Marmal in Mazar-i-Sharif. (

Parliament chair: None of the trials are related to visa-liberalisation

As per the Chairman of the Georgian Parliament, the visa liberalization issue is not related to any trials - including the "Rustavi 2" case - ongoing in Georgia.

"All of our partners tell us that Georgia has fulfilled all the conditions of the visa liberalization. Tomorrow, if the issue of the visa liberalization is resolved positively, the day after tomorrow there will be the issues and topics in Georgia - political freedoms, democratic institutions, human rights - that our European colleagues will be interested in. This is a constant process, but it is not related to the visa liberalization issue,” Davit Usupashvili said. (