Georgian President names new Prime Minister

A state of emergency in Georgia has been lifted, although the news has largely been overshadowed by the resignation of the country`s Prime Minister Zurab Nogaideli and the entire Cabinet. Chairman of the Bank of Georgia, Lado Gurgenidze became Nogaideli`s

Zurab Nogaideli cited ill health as his reason. Under the country’s constitution the cabinet must resign also.

The President Mikhail Saakashvili has already named the Chairman of the Bank of Georgia, Lado Gurgenidze as Nogaideli`s successor.

The Parliament has to approve the new PM.

State rule was imposed by President Mikhail Saakashvili on November 7 and was approved by the Parliament which later officially stopped it.

It followed violent protests against Saakashvili in the capital Tbilisi that left over 500 injured.

I want to state that every political force, all political figures and activists, and every citizen will have the full freedom to practice their political rights, without any restrictions. We have special laws, which guarantee the opposition the right to use [TV] air time and to use media sources

Mikhail Saakashvili

Apart from outlawing public meetings and demonstrations, the emergency rule also meant that only the Georgian state broadcaster could gather and broadcast news.

“I want to state that every political force, all political figures and activists, and every citizen will have the full freedom to practice their political rights, without any restrictions. We have special laws, which guarantee the opposition the right to use [TV] air time and to use media sources,” Mikhal Saakashvili told journalists on Friday.

One station which will not be back on air is Imedi TV, the opposition-leaning body operated by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation. Its license has been suspended indefinitely and its assets frozen.

The EU special representative to the South Caucasus, Peter Semneby, said on Friday that the Georgian government may allow Imedi to re-open in the near future.

Georgian PM resigns

In April 2007, Nogaildeli underwent a complex heart surgery in the U.S. and doctors said he should not expose himself to too much stress or overwork himself.

He has not been seen as independent and powerful figure.

With the election just around the corner Saakashvili may want to get rid of some less popular figures using the constitutional arrangements.

Rebel minister trial

 

Okruashvili has become a wanted man
Okruashvili has become a wanted man

A trial of the former Georgian Defence minister, Irakly Okruashvili, has begun in the capital Tbilisi. Meanwhile, the accused remains in self-imposed exile in Germany.

Okruashvili was detained in September after he accused his former close ally, President Saakashvili, of a string of crimes.

The rebel minister was charged with corruption, money laundering and abuse of office.

Okruashvili was later released on $US 6 million bail and left for Germany, pledging to return when summoned by the court.

Now he is declared a wanted man because he has not shown up for his trial and failed to meet the terms of his bail.

The prosecutors say they will issue a warrant for him through Interpol.