Georgian press digest: excerpts


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Subject: Georgian press digest: excerpts

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Georgian press digest: excerpts


ANNOTATED DAILY HEADLINES OF THE GEORGIAN PRESS
 
Compiled by the Caucasian Institute for Peace, Democracy and
Development (CIPDD)
 
Text: Tamara Shamil
English version: Guram Dumbadze
Editor: Emil Adelkhanov-Steinberg
 
July 12, 1999

.............

3. TERRORISTS MADE THE HOSTAGES' LIST, THEN TOOK OFF THEIR MONEY,
JEWELLERY AND OTHER THINGS

Seven masked gunmen captured a helicopter with humanitarian aid and
several people in the Kodori Gorge (in the mountainous part of
Abkhazia still controlled by Georgia) on July 9. The Georgian minister
of health Avtandil Djorbenadze, physicians and journalists that were
on board were released without any special troubles, but some high
ranking officials of the Tbilisi-based Abkhaz government were beaten
with tommy-gun butts without mercy. All were freed within a few hours.
The newspaper stresses the fact that the gunmen spoke Georgian. The
Procurator's Office is investigating the incident.
Shorena Marsagishvili. "Akhali Taoba" No. 189, July 12, pp. 3, 4
 
4. ACCORDING TO THE SEPARATISTS, THREE EXPLOSIONS IN SUKHUMI MUST BE
BLAMED ON GEORGIAN TERRORISTS

The Abkhaz authorities blame the incidents of July 9, when three
explosions take place in Sukhumi (see Appendix), on Georgian
terrorists. No casualties were reported, though some buildings were
destroyed.
Prime-News agency. "Resonance" No. 187, July 12, p. 2
 
.............

7. THE RUSSIAN COLOURS STRICKEN AT THE SARPI CHECKPOINT

The Russian frontier guards were withdrawn from the Sarpi checkpoint
at the Adjarian sector of the Georgian-Turkish border on July 9. From
now on this part of the border will be controlled by the Adjarian
bureau of the Georgian State Department of Frontier Defence. The
Russian frontier troops will be completely withdrawn from Georgia by
the end of August.
Gea news agency. "Dilis Gazeti" No. 155, July 10, p. 5
 
Appendix

THREE EXPLOSIONS ROCK SUKHUMI THURSDAY NIGHT.

Sukhumi. July 9 (Interfax) - Three powerful explosions rocked the
Abkhazian capital of Sukhumi on Thursday night. No casualties were
caused by the blasts, which occurred in different areas of the city.

The first bomb detonated at 10:30 p.m. at a school that had been
destroyed during the 1992 conflict. The ruins are situated 200 meters
away from the city's interior ministry department. Another exposition
devastated the building of the housing management department of the
Sukhumi administration at 11 p.m. A third bomb was planted under a
tree outside the Aitar Inn and went off at around 1 a.m. Friday
morning. Nobody was hurt in the explosion, and it did no damage to
nearby buildings.

Sappers defused another mine near the inn. The Prosecutor's Office and
the Security Service are investigating the bombings.

Acting Abkhazian President Valery Arshba has conducted a closed
emergency meeting with the heads of the law enforcement bodies. Arshba
is temporarily carrying out the duties of Abkhazian President
Vladislav Ardzinba, who is on vacation.
----------------------------


July 13, 1999

1. THE GALI ADMINISTRATION OFFICE BOMBED

A bomb exploded in the office of the Gali administration yesterday.
The building is damaged, a guard injured. The Abkhaz authorities blame
the incident on Georgian terrorists. However, local people think that
the bombing in Gali and Sukhumi stem from the rivalry within the
Ministry of Internal Affairs of Abkhazia: the blasts has become more
frequent after a TV interview of Almasbey Kchach, the Abkhaz interior
minister, who warned that all the officers who patronaged criminal
groups would be fired.  
Iprinda news agency. "Dilis Gazeti" No. 157, July 13, p. 2

.............

3. RUSSIA DEMANDS TO REPATRIATE MESKHETIAN TURKS TO GEORGIA

The problem of Meskhetians living in Russia must be solved in two
ways: placing in jobs those of them who have Russian citizenship and
repatriation of those willing to get back to Georgia, Vyacheslav
Mikhailov, the Russian minister for ethnicities, says. He says Russia
is ready to help Georgia in solving the problem. But Georgia is doing
nothing to repatriate the Muslim Meskhetians, he says. 
Prime-News agency. "Resonance" No. 188, July 13, p. 2
----------------------------


July 14, 1999

1.THE OFFICE OF PROCURATOR-GENERAL TO TACKLE THE CASE

The Office of Procurator-General of Georgia claims that the
Procurator's Office of the Adjarian autonomy has no legal rights to
investigate financial violations in the Georgian state shipping
company (millions of dollars are supposed to be embezzled). The talks
of Deputy Procurator-General, Revaz Qipiani with Aslan Abashidze and
other high ranking Adjarian officials came to nothing. As a result,
the two offices are carrying out parallel investigations.
Larisa Tumanishvili. "Svobodnaya Gruzia" No. 157, July 14, p. 3

.............

3. TERRORISTS TO BE EXECUTED ON THE SPOT

According to Almasbey Kchach, the interior minister of the
self-proclaimed Abkhaz republic, Georgian terrorists have intensified
their operations in Abkhazia. "They claim themselves partisans but in
fact are controlled by the Georgian security services," he says. If
captured, he warns, they will be executed on the spot.
Gea news agency. "Akhali Taoba" No. 191, July 14, p. 9
----------------------------


July 15, 1999

1. UNTIL THE INSTITUTE OF STATE AGENT IS NOT ESTABLISHED, OUR CITIZENS
WILL BE UNABLE TO APPEAL TO THE EUROPEAN COURT

The newspapers write that now is the time to set up an institute of
State Agent as a defence tool of the state, to protect the state from
accusations of its citizens in the European Court. Its creation is up
to the Ministry of Justice.
"Droni" No. 76, July 15, p. 2

2. GUERRILLAS GETTING READY FOR TERRORIST ACTIONS

The guerrilla warfare in Abkhazia will intensify as the refugees have
come to realise that the Georgian authorities are either deliberately
dragging their feet in solving the problem or unable to do anything
about it, a Georgian guerrilla told journalists on condition of
anonymity. In a few weeks terrorist actions would sweep over the whole
territory of Abkhazia, he predicts. 
Prime-News agency. "Alia" No. 110, July 15-16, p. 2

3. WILL ARDZINBA VOTE FOR ASLAN ABASHIDZE?

At his yesterday's press-conference, Akaki Asatiani, the leader of the
Union of Georgian Traditionalists, said he was going to meet some
people of Ardzinba's team in Sukhumi or Baku, Azerbaijan. The author
reminds us that the Union is a member of the so-called Batumi
electoral block and that Batumi dreams of playing key figure in
solving the problems of Abkhazia's returning to Georgia and of the
refugees' repatriation. According to the 
newspaper, on the eve of the parliamentary elections Aslan Abashidze
and Vladislav Ardzinba, the Adjarian and Abkhaz leaders respectively,
may sign a document on mutual confidence and thus substantially damage
the image of the ruling party.
Zviad Pochkhua. "Resonance" No. 190, July 15, pp. 1, 4
----------------------------


July 16, 1999

1. GEORGIAN COAST GUARDS FLURRIED ABKHAZ SEPARATISTS

Statements of Abkhaz authorities sound bellicose. The ministers of
force agencies and that of foreign affairs warn the Georgian
government that if Georgian Coast Guards enter Abkhaz coastal waters,
Abkhazia will resort to drastic measures. Georgian terrorists have
killed 29 citizens of Abkhazia, including seven policemen, in some
last days, the Foreign Minister Sergey Shamba told a UN observer. The
increased activities of the Georgian terrorists, he said, may lead to
a renewal of hostilities in Gali, like those of last May.
Lado Kiria. "Shvidi Dge" No. 82, July 16-18, p. 3

2. MESKHETIAN TURKS: THE LATEST RUSSIAN BOMB FOR GEORGIA

Georgia was allowed the membership of the Council of Europe on
condition that it would adopt a law on repatriation of the Meskhetians
in two years and complete the whole process in the next 10 years. And
now the Russian delegation at the CE demands the Council to exert
pressure on Georgia to make its government repatriate them not just to
Georgia but to Meskheti in the shortest time, some sources in the CE
inform. Populated mostly by ethnic Armenians, Mesketi or
Samtskhe-Djavakheti region is a headache for Georgia as it is, the
newspaper writes.
Merab Gaprindashvili. "Meridiani 44" No. 82, July 16-19, p. 3

3. WE ALL ARE ADJARIANS

The Adjarian regional branch of the Citizens' Union of Georgia (CUG),
which used to be a satellite of the Adjarian leader Aslan Abashidze's
party Union for Democratic Revival since the CUG and UDR formed a bloc
at the last elections and finally was disbanded, is returning to life.
Moreover, it is going to become opposition: Aziz Akhvlediani, who has
a name for his strong opposition to Aslan Abashidze, was elected its
chairman at the constituent meeting yesterday. The author asserts that
to join the CUG in Adjaria today one must be as brave as
Solzhenitzyn.  
Batu Tbileli. "Dilis Gazeti" No. 160, July 16, p. 3

4. ARDZINBA'S GOVERNMENT IS NOT GOING TO HOLD TALKS WITH THE BATUMI
ALLIANCE

In response to the leader of Georgian Traditionalists Akaki Asatiani's
statement about his intentions to negotiate with Abkhaz leadership on
behalf of the Batumi electoral bloc, Henri Djergenia, Vladislav
Ardzinba's spokesman at the Georgian-Abkhaz negotiations, said the
Abkhaz authorities were not going to hold any official talks with
Georgian political parties or alliances. "It is by central governments
that interstate problems should be solved," he said.
Kavkaz-Press agency. "Dilis Gazeti" No. 160, July 16, p. 5.

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