The “Georgian Detail” exhibit of artist Zeinab Barnovi was held at the Orbeliani Palace with the goal of popularizing Georgian culture and promoting the modern creative industry.
President Salome Zourabichvili, who toured the exhibit along with guests, wished Zeinab Barnovi success in her endeavours. Her works include examples of Khevsuretian clothes, headscarves, chikhtikopi, pillows, lamps, bags and photos created based on the motifs of Georgia.
Press Office of the Georgian President
I welcome the plan to transfer the former President to the Gori Military Hospital as a place that meets all medical and security standards.
This decision fully responds to the request of the European Court of Human Rights, to which the former President agreed to end his hunger strike if transferred to a multidisciplinary clinic.
I also welcome Elene Khoshtaria's decision to end her hunger strike.
The readiness of the opposition to not hold protests in the vicinity of the clinic is important and the right thing to do, as is the decision of some parties to end their parliamentary boycott.
Today's decisions are steps forward that will ensure the peace of society and the stability of the country.
Vienna-based Georgian Musicians Help Development of Georgian Culture, Respond to President’s Initiative
Days following the official visit of President Salome Zourabichvili to the Republic of Austria, during which she called on Vienna-based Georgian cultural figures to participate in the development of Georgia, musicians Ketevan Sepashvili and Temo Kharshiladze took on the call and sent rare-edition music sheet books that were presented to the Talent Decade Tbilisi Musical School by Mr. Vladimer Onoprishvili, Advisor to the President on Cultural Affairs.
The Vienna musicians also gifted CDs of the works of Giya Kancheli, which the Administration sets to distribute as presents to high-level guests in a move to popularize Georgian music.
President Salome Zourabichvili held an audience with His Holiness Pope Francis as part of her official visit to the Holy See, during which the two sides emphasized that a new phase of bilateral cooperation began with this visit and highlighted the deepening and strengthening of bilateral relations in culture, education and science. The President discussed the situation in the South Caucasus and Georgia’s role in the mediation between Armenia and Azerbaijan, noting that without dialogue, it is impossible to overcome conflicts and deescalate the situation. The President also spoke about the dire humanitarian situation and human rights violations in the occupied territories of Georgia, including restrictions on the freedom of movement and kidnappings, as well as the difficult situation for Georgian Orthodox churches in the occupied territories.
The President also highlighted the importance of the opening of opportunities to develop cooperation in culture and education following this official visit. She also brought up pediatric oncology and the fact that the Bambino Gesu Children’s Hospital expressed readiness to cooperate with Georgia on this issue. The two sides emphasized the role of small countries in addressing climate change and environmental issues and the importance of strengthening that role, as small countries do not have the clout to voice their views on global challenges alone.
The President gifted to His Holiness a manuscript of the 12th century hymn “Thou Art a Vineyard” (written by King Demetrius I) dedicated to Pope Francis, a book on Georgian culture, a book on Georgian churches in the occupied territories, a selection of Georgian wines from all around the country, and handed over a gift from His Holiness Ilia II.
Press office President of Georgia
President Salome Zourabichvili held a meeting today at the Orbeliani Palace with H.E. Helga Maria Schmid, Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, during which the two leaders agreed on the President’s initiative to hold a conference of women leaders in Georgia to promote the role of women in peace and security. The sides also discussed the upcoming municipal elections and stressed the importance of the participation of election observation missions especially the OSCE/ODIHR EOM.
The sides also discussed the occupied territories, including the deteriorating of the humanitarian situation following the closure of crossing points by the de facto regime, human rights violations and kidnappings by the occupation regime, the case of Zaza Gakheladze, and the need to strengthen the Geneva International Discussions to increase the effectiveness of the format.
President Zourabichvili and Secretary General Schmid also touched on the regional situation and stressed Georgia’s role in ensuring regional peace and stability.
News Releases of the President administration
Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili today announced that she pledges to pardon Giorgi Rurua if political actors sign the EU-backed compromise paper and enter the parliament.
"I am surprised by the statement made today by the ruling party that uses my name over and over again without my permission and consent and links it to one specific pardon. They have not understood that such a decision, especially in such a case but not only, should be made without expectations of criticism or praise and only if I deem it necessary. I think I have already shown this through my deeds.
I would like to remind everyone of one simple rule: the power of pardon is the discretion of the President and is not the subject of negotiations. I want to make it clear that the decision to pardon, as I have said more than once, is not subject to pressure, to instructions or demands, whether they may be from the opposition, the ruling party, or anyone else.
According to principle, the President does not speak about pardons and does not disclose motivation. However, because of some continuous appeals on this subject and because of the current situation, I am forced to violate this principle and state clearly my position to stop any speculation.
I think no one will be surprised to hear that for me and for the rest of society, someone with such a well-known past can be called many things, but not a political prisoner. That individual does not fit into any category of pardon by any means, be it righteousness, morality, or politics.
Nevertheless, as I once already took it upon myself, I believe here again that if what’s at stake is the country’s political stalemate, its stability, progress, and future, it is the President’s duty to put the country above her own views and principles.
With that in mind, I am ready to make a decision scandalous also for myself. But I make this decision only on my condition, that such a step must be the last step to end the crisis and pave the way for the country and for Parliament to enter a normal political life and deal with existing challenges without any other distractions.
This means that my decision will be implemented only when, on the one hand, the political parties sign the final document and enter Parliament, and on the other hand, the representatives of the European Union and the United States announce that an agreement has been reached. Once this announcement is done, I will sign the act of pardon within a week", - the President of Georgia Says.
Nine months ago, I made a personally difficult and painful decision for society that was aimed at maintaining state stability, and served to defeat a political crisis and polarization.
Unfortunately, polarization, tensions and confrontation continue to increase on a daily basis. Putting the electoral results declared legitimate under question, using any type of disobedience, encouraging social and public protests serve to weaken and destabilize the country.
This can lead to dire consequences - losing public confidence in democratic institutions is tantamount to setting a crushing precedent, not only for us but for democracies stronger than us. Respecting the election result and acknowledging loss is the cornerstone of democracy! The rejection of these democratic principles pleases only those forces, inside and outside the country, who put their political ambitions above the interests of the country and those in the region who perceive Georgia’s stability and democracy as a threat.
Today, I held a meeting with representatives of the diplomatic corps and discussed the current situation in detail. I believe that there is a need for immediate de-escalation of the situation and easing of tensions, which need, first of all, a real constructive dialogue, so that these processes do not damage the stability of the country and its international image.
Through my experience, I am ready to support all forms of dialogue, but I am convinced that compromise is only justified when both sides are ready for constructive dialogue and not when concessions are perceived as weakness, or even more so when it can be seen as someone's own victory. Constructive dialogue is also opposed to the imposition of preconditions and the radicalization of processes.
I, as the guarantor of this country’s independence, sovereignty, Europeanness, democratic development and therefore stability, reflecting on the interests of the country and of every citizen, believe that we will all be victorious through calm and development.
I hope that the Prime Minister-nominee and his future government will be able to end this severe process and will not allow anyone to put personal political ambitions above the country’s interests and endanger those institutions that are the foundation for a democratic and legal state.
On January 10, 2020, the meeting of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Turkmenistan to Georgia Mr. D. Muratov with the President of Georgia Her Excellency Mrs. S. Zourabichvili was held at the “Orbeliani” Presidential Palace.
In the beginning of the meeting, the Ambassador conveyed the invitation letter of the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov addressed to the President of Georgia and inviting her to participate to the International Conference «Policy of Neutrality and its importance in ensuring international peace, security and sustainable development», dedicated to the 25th anniversary of Neutrality, which will be held on December 11-12, 2020 in Ashgabat.
During the conversation, the parties noted the vital role of the policy of permanent Neutrality implemented under the leadership of the President of Turkmenistan and aimed at ensuring peace, international security and sustainable development.
The bilateral relations in political, trade-economic and cultural-humanitarian spheres were also discussed.
President Salome Zourabichvili paid an official visit to the Republic of Azerbaijan. In Baku, she was hosted by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan Nadir Hüseynov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to Azerbaijan Zurab Pataradze, and Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Azerbaijan to Georgia Dursun Hasanov at Heydar Aliyev International Airport.
As part of the visit, President Zourabichvili will hold high-level meetings with President Ilham Aliyev, Prime Minister Novruz Mammadov and Speaker of the National Assembly Ogtay Asadov.
The visit aims at further advancing Georgia’s strategic partnership with a neighboring state Azerbaijan. Aside political, economic, and trade relations, development of cultural ties that have been based on good neighborly and friendly relations between the Georgian and Azeri peoples over the years is also a top priority.
President Zourabichvili will meet with Georgian students studying in Baku, representatives of business groups, and members of the Georgian diaspora.
She will also visit Qakh District, Zaqatala District, and Balakan District where ethnic Georgians reside.
The Georgian state delegation visiting Baku includes Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Giorgi Kobulia, Deputy Chairperson of the Parliament and Head of Georgia-Azerbaijan Friendship Group Zviad Dzidziguri, Chair of the Diaspora and Caucasus Issues Committee and member of Georgia-Azerbaijan Friendship Group Zviad Kvatchantiradze, member of the European Integration Committee and member of Georgia-Azerbaijan Friendship Group Giorgi Mosidze, member of the Education, Science and Culture Committee and member of Georgia-Azerbaijan Friendship Group Nino Tsilosani, member of the Human Rights and Civil Integration Committee Ada Marshania, Head of President Zourabichvili’s Administration Lasha Zhvania, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Mikheil Ninua, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to Azerbaijan Zurab Pataradze and Deputy Head of President Zourabichvili’s Administration Ketevan Makharashvili.
Salome Zourabichvili, President of Georgia will leave for Brussels on January 21 to hold meetings as part of her fist working visit abroad.
According to Natalie Sabanadze, Ambassador of Georgia to the Kingdom of Belgium and Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and Head of Georgian Mission to the EU, President Zourabichvili’s first visit to Brussels has a political significance.
“The President of Georgia will meet with our partners in NATO and the EU. Meetings are planned with all three presidents of the EU, namely Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission and Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament. To discuss foreign affairs, President Zourabichvili will hold meetings with Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Dimitris Avramopoulos, European Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship. It is likely and I am certain that the President will once again underscore the importance of Georgia’s European integration,” Natalie Sabanadze said.
President Zourabichvili’s visit will end on January 23.