Minister of Health Ekaterine Tikaradze has resigned
The Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labor, Health and Social Affairs – Ekaterine Tikaradze announced at a briefing on December 9 that she was leaving her position and continuing her work in the Georgian Dream Political Council.
Ekaterine Tikaradze did not mention the reason for her resignation at the briefing held at the Georgian Dream office. She stressed that after consultations with Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili and the chairman of the Georgian Dream, Irakli Kobakhidze, “we considered it to be a right decision to continue my work in the Georgian Dream party, in the political council, and to strengthen Georgian health and social protection systems from here.” Ekaterine Tikaradze was appointed Minister of Health in June 2019. She replaced Davit Sergeenko, who served as Minister of Health in the Georgian Dream government for 6 years.
On December 7, TV Pirveli reported that Health Minister Ekaterine Tikaradze had confronted the Prime Minister. The reason for the controversy is the issue of a perpetuality green passport for those people who recovered from Coronavirus, which the healthcare team openly opposes.
Irakli Kobakhidze and Kelly Degnan faced each other
Georgian Dream chairman Irakli Kobakhidze and the US Ambassador to Georgia Kelly Degnan have clashed over their qualifications and legal knowledge after the ambassador criticized the ruling party for the possible rejection of EU-mediated constitutional changes. The changes envisage a reduction of the electoral threshold from 5% to 2% and the holding of the next parliamentary elections in a fully proportional system.
Ambassador Degnan said that “some people do not seem to understand that democracy requires a plurality of views” and warned that one-party rule posed a threat of “majority tyranny”. In response to the ambassador, the chairman of the Georgian Dream – Irakli Kobakhidze said on December 2 that a 2% threshold or less applies to only two EU member states. He added that “tyranny is not formed in any country [where there is a higher threshold].” “I am telling you this as an expert. “Ms Kelly is not an expert herself,” Kobakhidze told reporters.
According to him, pluralism and diversity are ensured by the proportional electoral system, which “was first introduced in Georgia by the Georgian Dream and this system will be launched in 2024.” The amendments envisaged by the April 19 agreement provide for the holding of any subsequent elections, including early parliamentary elections, in a fully proportional system.
In response to Irakli Kobakhidze, the US Ambassador said on December 3, “I have great respect for Mr. Kobakhidze’s knowledge and experience in constitutional law, as well as for other constitutionalists I have had the honour of meeting here in Georgia. “This country has a really good education and a well-informed constitutional law specialist.”
However, the ambassador noted that she also has experience in constitutional law and has assisted one country in writing the constitution, including through comparative analysis of various constitutions. “Comparing what works well in one system or another is very important and useful, but in the end, the country has to decide for itself which is best for its system,” the ambassador said.
The Chinese ambassador met with the Abkhazian “diplomat” in Damascus
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of occupied Abkhazia, the Chinese Ambassador to Syria Feng Biao hosted Abkhaz “Ambassador” to Syria Bagrat Khutaba on December 6 at the Chinese Embassy in Damascus.
Speaking at the meeting, Inal Ardzinba, Abkhazia’s newly appointed “Foreign Minister” and former Kremlin staffer, said that Abkhazia and China, which “stand united in support of the Syrian Arab Republic, will be able to begin fruitful work to establish humanitarian and trade and economic ties.” Ardzinba also praised China’s “foreign policy approach, which is focused on justice, respect for the interests of partners and a positive outcome.”
China does not recognize the independence of occupied Abkhazia and the Tskhinvali region. To date, only Russia, Venezuela, Nauru, Nicaragua and Syria have recognized the independence of the two regions.
Sokhumi opened an “embassy” in Syria in October 2020.