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2010-02-26
Human Rights Defenders in Defense of Human Rights Defenders!
On February 26, human rights organizations in Georgia gave a pres-conference in the Public Defender’s Office and protested the launched smear campaign against them. Regional Manager of the Norwegian Human Rights House Anne Bonde also attended the press-conference; her assessments of the situation were particularly interesting for Georgian media. Anne Bonde also represents South Caucasus Network of Human Rights Defenders.

2010-02-26
History of 38 Expropriated Families
Properties of 38 families living in Adlia settlement were expropriated. The government intends to build additional road to Batumi Airport in this area. The population is not going to give in because Batumi City Hall promised only 67 GEL for one square meter of their land that is very small sum, as locals claim. Batumi City Hall states the offer is very profitable for them.

2010-02-26
“State Is Funded from Committed Crimes” – Influential Organization Exposed Georgian Faulty Practice
Influential organization Transparency International – Georgia published a special report on the system of plea-bargain working in Georgia. The report describes the work of the plea bargain system in Georgia and how it influences the protection of the right to fair trial.

2010-02-25
Why Is Attorney Sent to Prison for Eight Years
Investigation accused lawyer from Gori Marina Chitadze in extorting money from client and oppression on victims in order to change the testimony. The lawyer is sentenced to 8-year-imprisonment. Here is the story which changed the fate of Marina Chitadze.

2010-02-24
Protest Rallies for the Release of Ossetian Hostages in Europe
Foreigners are also concerned about the fate of Ossetian hostages in Georgian detention settings. German political party Die Linke is particularly interested in this problem.

2010-02-24
“Let’s Exchange Wallets, Brother”, or Who Fills in the Purse of Real.TV
“Let’s exchange our wallets, my brother,” journalist of the TV-Company “Real-TV” Giorgi Kapanadze offered journalist Aleko Elisashvili in the program of Natia Gamtsemlidze “Profession Journalist” on Maestro-TV. The program was transmitted on February 11. But on February 12, after hard effort we got hold of the document which proved that one of the sources for the budget of Real.TV is Shida Kartli region governor Lado Vardzelashvili.

2010-02-23
Legal Aid Centre for Media Will Assist Journalists
Georgian Young Lawyers Association decided to create Legal Aid Centre for Media because of recent incidents. Local officials have intimidated and interfered in the professional activities of the representatives of regional (not only) media outlets more frequently. Legal Aid Centre offers its support to media representatives in their professional activities.

2010-02-23
Black PR Campaign VS Non-Governmental Organizations
Our article was ready when newspaper “Versia” published an article – “Who Is Spy with Code Name “Shvartsika” and What Encoders Were Published on Internet Websites”. The article is about a member of the South Caucasus Network of Human Rights Defenders, founder of the Multinational Georgia Arnold Stepanian. In fact, “Versia” confirms the statements spread by the Human Rights Center about the attempt of the government to discredit non-governmental organizations in the country. Thus, Counter-Intelligence Department and Defense and Security Committee of Parliament seem to be ordered to write Russian fairy-tales about spies who “comfortably work in NGOs.” Later, these fairy-tales are well-designed and spread by media sources.

2010-02-23
Noghaideli’s Party Blames Government in Terrorizing Their Supporters
Movement for Just Georgia blames the government in terrorizing their supporters. According to the press-center of the opposition party, as a result of intimidation, 19 activists left their Gurjaani district organization. Their three supporters were fired from work. The press center reported that administration of the Gemo Ltd and Vashlovani Reserved Territory categorically deny the information.

2010-02-23
GEORGIA: Death threats against a leading Georgian journalist
The South Caucasus Network of Human Rights Defenders, the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders (a joint programme of the World Organisation Against Torture - OMCT and the International Federation for Human Rights - FIDH), Human Rights House Foundation,  Norwegian Helsinki Committee, Front Line and ARTICLE 19 condemn the pressure and intimidation exerted by Georgian authorities against leading investigative journalist Vakhtang Komakhidze, and denounce a continuous defamation campaign against Mr. Komakhidze.

2010-02-22
Prisoner Sewed Up His Mouth and Eyes and Then Cut His Body by Sharp Knife
On February 14 Apolon Giorgadze sewed his mouth and on February 16 - eyes. Giorgadze does not plead guilty and for this reason he used grave forms of protest. On February 8, more precisely, Kutaisi City Court added more 6 years to his sentence, later ten months were added to his term for disobedience to prison officer. Before that, he was sent to prison for 12 years because of robbery. By now, he has served only 5 years. The prisoner does not plead himself guilty in any of the accusations.

2010-02-22
“Seaside of Sorrow” – Film about Pain of Abkhaz and Georgian Peoples
On February 19, the Human Rights Center presented documentary film of Niko Tsuladze “Seaside of Sorrow” in the small hall of Cinema House. 45-minutes long film is about tragic history of Abkhaz Muhajirs from 1860s to present day.

2010-02-22
Moscow Tightens Grip on Abkhazia
On February 17, Russia signed a package of military and economic deals with Abkhazia on Wednesday that will tighten Moscow’s grip on Georgia’s breakaway region.

2010-02-22
Abkhaz Leader: 'We Are An Independent Country And That Will Not Change”
MOSCOW -- Ties between Abkhazia and Russia have blossomed at a frantic rate ever since Moscow recognized the Georgian breakaway republic's independence following the Russia-Georgia war in 2008.

2010-02-18
“Freedom Is Difficult when There Is Murderer in the City” – Manifestation in Support of Political Prisoners
On February 18, members and supporters of the Conservative party, People’s Party and Movement for Just Georgia organized protest movement from underground station “Tsereteli” to US “Didube”. Demonstrators demanded to release arbitrarily detained political prisoners.

2010-02-18
Unexecuted Court Decisions Increased
Number of unexecuted court decisions has seriously increased at Imereti regional bureau of the Execution Department. Victimized citizens demand to execute court decisions. Lawyers clarify that unexecuted judgments is a serious problem throughout the country and it is caused by various reasons.

2010-02-17
Government Removed Both Belts and Bridle before Elections
According to experts, increase of employees at state institutions is connected with political factors. Representatives of the opposition parties stated that, government will use administrative resource again in the self-governmental elections. The policy of “tightening the belts”, which was announced by the president did not start at all; just the opposite, ongoing events in the regions look more like removing the belts. According to the experts everything will turn into turmoil.

2010-02-17
Tbilisi and Tskhinvali Compete Each Other in Kidnapping People
At Geneva Negotiations de-fact government of South Ossetia requests release of Genadi Pliev and Georgian delegation requests release of Malkhaz Akhvlediani. Pliev is still a hostage of the MIA of Georgia; Akhvlediani is in Tskhinvali prison. Georgian and Ossetian delegations in Geneva do not compromise like stubborn goats; and meanwhile a lot of people are being kidnapped.

2010-02-17
IDPs Complain about Poor Living Conditions
State Strategy Plan about IDPs was enacted by the government of Georgia in May of 2010. Implementation of the plan has started and it aims to build new collective residential centers for 84 900 IDPs and new houses for 11 500 IDPs. According to official data, Municipal Development Fund of Georgia has signed 86 contracts with total price of 75 million GEL. Among them, 17 collective centers are rehabilitated throughout Georgia and 4 of them are in Kutaisi. The IDPs living in the collective centers claim the reconstruction activities were carried out at a very poor quality.

2010-02-16
Journalists Are Not Protected from Publishers
Lack of Labor Contract in Georgian media is still problem. According to lawyers, this mechanism guarantees editorial freedom in media. According to them, labor agreement is a guarantee to avoid interference in the media activities. Media sources did not sign labor contracts with journalists even when the employer was obliged to sign labor contract under Labor Code. The situation became more complicated after amendments were introduced to the Labor Code and the obligation of signing agreement was cancelled.

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