Twenty-eight year old, U.S.-educated Mikheil Saakashvili was elected yesterday to the post of majority leader in the Georgian parliament. Saakashvili until now headed the parliament’s committee for legal affairs and legislation. Twenty-nine year old Giorgi Baramidze, until now the majority leader, will be studying at Georgetown University in Washington beginning next month. (Prime-News, August 11)
Baramidze is being tipped as a possible chairman of parliament after the next elections, in place of the current speaker, Zurab Zhvania. The speaker, who is in his early thirties, is said to aim for a higher post. The three men, outspokenly pro-Western, belong to President Eduard Shevardnadze’s Union of Citizens of Georgia. Another U.S.-trained young leader, Davit Tevzadze, was recently appointed defense minister. Not coincidentally, the Russian-oriented leader of Ajaria, Aslan Abashidze, has been demanding the dismissal of these men from their posts.
CLASHES ACROSS THE GEORGIAN-ABKHAZ DEMARCATION LINE.