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The News in Brief

Friday, August 25
PM Appoints New Governor of Guria Region

On August 21, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili appointed Merab Chanukvadze as the new governor of the Guria region in western Georgia.

Chanukvadze, who was the head of the Ozurgeti Municipality before his promotion, replaced Gia Salukvadze, who served in the post from May 2015 until August 14 2017.

Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili spoke about leadership changes in the Guria and Racha-Lechkhum-Kvemo Svaneti regions at a government session on August 10. Kvirikashvili said that the staff reshuffles were “natural,” and that they were needed to address “new challenges” and the government’s “ambitious” spatial development plan.

Unlike the heads (Gamgebeli) of municipalities, who have been directly elected since 2014, provincial governors are appointed by the prime minister. (

,b>Georgia, US sign memorandum for further development of Georgia’s defence systems

Today, the Georgian Defence Ministry and the United States European Command have signed a memorandum of understanding on the strengthening the defence capabilities of Georgia.

The memorandum envisages cooperation in the implementation of the Georgia Defence Readiness Program (GDPR), a program that is part of the framework agreement on security cooperation for 2016-2019 between the US Department of Defence and the Georgian Defence Ministry. The agreement is to promote the further development of Georgia’s defence system.

Defence Minister Levan Izoria said that the memorandum signed today will mainly focus on training aimed at advancing Georgia’s territorial defence capabilities.

"Together with our American counterparts, we are planning to form, equip and train nine battalions during the next three years in order to boost our defence and make Georgia a safer country in the future,” Izoria said after signing the ceremony.

From the American side, the document was signed by Major General David W. Allvin, the Director of the Strategy and Policy Headquarters at US European Command in Germany.

Izoria thanked him for the United States’ strong support for Georgia and stressed the importance of the Georgia Defence Readiness Program for the country’s defence sector. (

Sioni to Become One of the Most Popular Resort town in the East of Georgia

The town of Sioni, located along the banks of the Sioni reservoir, is visited by a large number of people in the summer. However, beyond the distinctive climatic conditions and clean water that attracts tourists, there is a serious lack of inner development.

According to Zaza Kutsnashvili, the majoritarian MP of Dusheti, Kazbegi and Tianeti, the government is trying to develop the Tianeti municipality, and in particular the town of Sioni.

”We are trying to speed up the development of Tianeti and Sioni. We have built new roads in the settlements, but there is no sewage system in Tianeti, which is still a problem.

“There was also no gas for 30 years, but we are building a new network that will be completed in November.

“As for infrastructure, two roads are being built from two directions, namely Sagarejo and Tbilisi.

“The low quality of the town’s infrastructure is the principle reason why it’s hard for Sioni to develop an inner urban system.

“When the construction of the roads and gas infrastructure is done, the building of a sewerage system building wstart, which will be a big push towards development and Sioni will become one of the most popular resorts in East Georgia,” Kutsnashvili said. (

,b>Iceland to no longer accept Georgian citizens’ applications on asylum – Ambassador

“Iceland will no longer accept Georgian citizens’ applications on regarding asylum and deport them to Georgia,” Georgia’s Special and Plenipotentiary Ambassador to Denmark and Iceland, Gigi Gigiadze, said.

According to the Ambassador, the Iceland Immigration Office released the decision on putting Georgi on the safe countries’ list on July 19.

On the basis of the decision, Iceland will no longer accept Georgian citizens’ applications and deport them to Georgia. Simultaneously, sanctions will be imposed on them.

According to Georgia’s Foreign Ministry, information on the deported Georgian citizens will be reflected on the Schengen Information System and the people will obey sanctions that envisage payment and a Schengen zone ban for five years. (IPN)