Sunday, September 21, 2008

Naval exercises to be held in Poti

Coastal and border forces from the Black Sea countries will participate in a naval training exercise called Falcon 2008, the first exercise to be held in Poti since the Russian aggression.
The first phase of the exercise will be conducted by the operation control centres of the Black Sea countries' coastal forces. The second phase will involve Georgian and Turkish coastal guards.

Opposition MP proposes setting up investigation commission

MP Jondi Baghaturia, leader of the political party Kartuli Dasi, has proposed setting up a parliamentary commission to investigate the August developments in Georgia. He has suggested that former Chair of Parliament Nino Burjanadze should chair this commission.

Baghaturia has also slammed other opposition figures who maintain that Georgia started the conflict in the Tskhinvali region this August.

Georgian judokai arrested in Poland

Warsaw police arrested three members of the Georgian Youth Judo Team, who were in Poland to participate in judo’s European Championship, on September 13.

Russian news agencies report that the judokai were arrested for raping a 28-year-old woman. Reportedly the woman, who went to the police two days after the incident, has changed her testimony several times. The Georgian team maintains the arrest is an unwarranted provocation.

The arrested sportsmen will be represented by a public defender until Georgian lawyers arrive in Warsaw.

Crime boss escapes from Moscow isolator

A Georgian crime boss has escaped from the Foreign Citizens' Detention Centre in Moscow. Giorgi Managadze, nicknamed “Kutaissky,” has been declared wanted by the Russian militia. The guards on duty at the insulator when Kutaissky escaped have been dismissed.

Managadze, 39, was arrested with 36 other crime bosses on a yacht in the Klyazmin reservoir some time ago.

Conservatives demand a memorial outside Parliament

Members of the Conservative Party have demanded that a memorial to the Georgian soldiers and civilians who died during the Russian invasion this August be erected outside Parliament.They say that a memorial is appropriate at that particular site because 20 protestors who were killed on April 9, 1989 are already commemorated there and cadets, killed in 1921 during Bolshevik invasion are buried under the Parliament building. The Conservatives assert that all these historic tragedies were the result of Russian occupation.

The Movement for United Georgia joined the Conservatives in expressing this demand. A memorial service for the souls of those who died in the recent war has been conducted in Kashveti Church.

Georgian soldiers undergo medical treatment in Israel

Israel is continuing to assist Georgia. Two Georgian soldiers wounded during the Russian invasion were taken to Israel on September 18 for high-level medical treatment. Nineteen other military personnel have already undergone surgery and other treatments in leading hospitals in Israel.
This medical programme was initiated by the Georgia-Israel Business Chamber. Under its terms, a delegation of seven officials arrived in Georgia in August and delivered humanitarian aid to Georgian villages damaged during Russian air attacks.

Landslide kills four in Adjara

A landslide has killed four residents of the village of Masaura, in the Khelvachauri region. All are members of Chavleishvili family.

The landslide was caused by non-stop rain in the region. Agricultural land and yards have been completely flooded. The grandfather and one daughter of this family survived the landslide but were hospitalized with serious injuries.

The flood situation is currently critical in the villages of Korolistavi and Sameba. Rescuers are helping to evacuate people who have survived the landslides and floods. Another local resident, Jemal Shantadze, has died in the village of Charnaghi as a result of the flooding. Adjara Government leader Levan Varzhalomidze is visiting villages affected by the disaster.

The Adjaran capital Batumi has also been flooded. Traffic has been suspended due to damage to the Benze Bridge, and the landslide has covered the railway line.

Sappers find mines in Tsalenjikha region

Military engineers have found land and antitank mines in the village of Muzhava in the Tsalenjikha region. The explosives were installed beside the central highway, next to the high-frequency transmitting line, Kavkasioni, where a Russian military checkpoint was stationed until the occupying troops pulled out.

The Russians mined the territory before they moved from Muzhava to the village of Lia. EU and UN monitors inspected the area while the sappers where defusing the mines.