Ministry of Internal Affairs
Due to worsened situation in Abkhazia, the ‘Power’ Ministries were the main point of attention.
On September 24 meeting with the President, Internal Affairs Minister, as well as Ministers of Defense and State Security and the Prosecutor General discussed current situation and the plan of actions, which, as President stated, should be launched on September 26th. The ministers did not clarify what kind of measures are going to be taken.
On September 26th, Zhvania-Saakashvili team, which includes former Justice Minister Mikheil Saakashvili, parliamentarians: Koba Davitashvili, Kote Kemularia and Petre Tsiskarishvili, accused Internal Affairs Minister in facilitating to the escalation of the situation in Abkhazia. Saakashvili stated, that Minister Targamadze tries to declare state of war in the country through the escalation of tension and consequently takeover the power. Targamadze refused this accusation same day.
On September 28th Targamadze plans to visit Moscow for negotiations with his Russian counter partner.
Ministry of Defense
Georgia has been refraining from participation in joint military events in the CIS framework. Chief of Georgian General Staff John Pirtskhalaishvili was not going to attend the meeting of his colleagues form the CIS countries in Moscow. However, escalation of the situation in Abkhazia made him to change his plans and depart to Moscow. He met his Russian colleague, as well as other Russian authorities.
Upon his return to Georgia, Pirtskhalaishvili stated, that Georgia does not face any threat from the Russian side. Pirtskhalaishvili assured official Moscow that there are no Chechen guerillas on the territory which is under control of the central Georgian government.
On September 24th Georgian armed forces have been presented two helicopters under the agreement between Georgian and Turkish Defense Ministries. The Turkish side will bear maintenance costs of the aircrafts for the next 5 years. Along with the helicopters, Georgian side received 200 tons of fuel as well.
Value of the aid is 20 million USD in total.
Ministry of State Security
Due to worsened situation in Abkhazia and tension in the relations with Russia, State Security Minister had to stand before the Parliament and present information which he possessed.
The session has been held behind the closed doors. Parliamentarians seemed to be dissatisfied with the results of the meeting, saying that the information was useless.
As it has become known last week, the Ministry has elaborated a bill, which would allow the Ministry of State Security to listen to the telephone conversations of the suspects, without prior permission form the court or the prosecutors office. The Ministry explains necessity of such a bill with current hard situation in the country.
National Security Council has discussed and approved the bill already. Former Minister of Justice Mikheil Saakashvili was against this document. New Minister Ronald Giligashvili makes no comments towards the bill yet.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The suggestion saying that Georgia has turned his foreign policy priorities from the West towards the North has been spread widely after September 11th terrorist attacks and during the last week especially. President Shevardnadze’s statement on September 26 might have been a reason for such rumors. That day President admitted presence of the terrorist in Georgian territory and declared that Georgia is ready to co-operate with the Russian side in fight against the terrorism.
On September 28th spokesman of the Georgian Foreign Ministry Kakha Sikharulidze made the following comment in this regard: “Main priority of Georgian foreign policy is conduction of balanced foreign policy. Relations with Russia are as important as relations with the West, United States in particular”.
On September 25th, Session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe discussed process of implementation of the obligations of Georgia as a member of this organization. The Council has been rather critical on this issue. “Georgia is far away from fulfilling all its obligations” says the press release of the Council of Europe. Main emphasize has been made on facts of violation of human rights, religious freedoms in particular.
After the debates, the Council has concluded to continue monitoring of processes in Georgia.
Ministry of Justice
Former employees of the Prosecutor’s Office and Internal Affairs Ministry are returning to the posts in the Justice Ministry.
On September 28th the Parliament appointed former Deputy Prosecutor General Ronald Giligashvili on the post of Justice Minister of Georgia. 118 parliamentarians favored the candidate and only one has objected. Giligashvili has been a chairman of the Committee for Procedural Issues of the Parliament.
In October Chamber of Control would inspect the Ministry of Justice. Saakashvili’s opponent parliamentarians have been demanding such inspection for a long time.
The Chamber would inspect functioning of financial services of the Ministry.
Ministry of Finances
International Monetary Fund (IMF) is concerned about increasing foreign debt of Georgia. “Continuous increase of foreign debts of Georgia, Armenia, Kyrgiztan and Tajikistan for the last 10 years endangers fiscal stability of these states and causes concern on high level of poverty” says report “Economic Perspectives of the World” by the IMF.
IMF is stating that the international society would have to extend further assistance to these countries.