Tbilisi: OSCE, Georgia Launch Measures to Strengthen Inter-Ethnic Ti

OSCE, Georgia Launch Measures to Strengthen Inter-Ethnic Ties

Civil Georgia, Georgia
Feb 16 2005

The Georgian government, with the assistance of the Organization for
Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), launched a new project
aimed at the strengthening of inter-ethnic relations in Georgia,
the OSCE Mission in Georgia reported on February 15.

The project will mainly focus on Georgia’s Samtskhe-Javakheti region,
which is predominately populated by ethnic Armenians.

The project, which was developed by the OSCE High Commissioner
on National Minorities, envisages Georgian language courses for
civil servants and university students, Armenian translations of
re-broadcasted of Georgian television news programs, and free legal
consultations for the ethnic Georgian and Armenian populations
in the towns of Akhaltsikhe, Akhalkalaki and Ninotsminda, in the
Samtskhe-Javakheti region.

President Mikheil Saakashvili called for a “building of bridges”
with the country’s ethnic minorities, while addressing students of
Tbilisi State University on February 15. “We should learn to look at
things through their [ethnic minorities’] eyes,” he said.