28 Dec 2015
South Ossetia – November-December 2015
Rumors regarding potential terrorist attacks, presentation of credentials by ambassador in Russia, IPRM meeting, three persons detained at the border, the case of Anna Sanakoeva’s murder, and aid to fire victims
On November 19, the media discussed the security forces going into a heightened level of alert due to the panic caused by the information on social media regarding imminent terrorist attacks in some schools.
According to South Ossetian media, President Leonid Tibilov stated that the information regarding terrorists in South Ossetia is baseless. Following the President, Secretary of the Security Council Anatoliy Pliev urged not to believe the rumors regarding the emergence of terrorists. According to him, “The operational environment is stable and under control. The primary reason of the tensions is the vicinity of Georgia that supports islamic terrorists and runs a hostile policy towards South Ossetia”.
At the end of the month, the media actively discussed the news regarding the presentation of credentials to Vladimir Putin by Ambassador of South Ossetia to Russia Znaur Gassiyev on November 26. In his speech, Vladimir Putin mentioned that South Ossetia will always have the support and partnership of the Russian Federation.
On the same day, the 60th anniversary meeting of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) between South Ossetia and Georgia was held in the village of Ergneti. The meetings are closed-door. Advisor to the President David Sanakoev headed the South Ossetian delegation. His predecessor Khokh Gagloyti completed his term on this post in late October.
The media wrote about Leonid Tibilov’s proposal to alter the election system of the members of the parliament and adopt a majoritarian-proportional system. This is to happen in response to the “opinion of the residents of the republic, in order to improve the election system of the republic, providing the electorate a greater number of candidates to parliamentary elections of the Republic of South Ossetia, regardless of their membership to political parties”.
In November and December, the media attention focused also on the start of the activities of the Constitutional Court. Head of the Presidential Administration Alan Dzhioyev is expected to propose three candidates from among law experts to be appointed as judges in the Constitutional Court.
Refering to the press service of the Committee of State Security (KGB), Sputnik reports that three people have been detained following an attempt to enter South Ossetia from the Georgian side. It happened in Leningor, Tskhinval, and Znaur regions. A resident of Georgia, born in 1959 was one the detainees. According to the media, he was taken to the border service of the KGB for clarifying the situation.
The media wrote about resources to be allocated to support entrepreneurship and agriculture for three years starting from 2015. The resources will be allocated for projects selected by the Ministry of Economy of South Ossetia and the Russian Investment Agency. In addition, a number of Russian banks will be giving loans, some on concessional terms, to South Ossetian entrepreneurs. Five business projects have already been selected. Applications are still being received, says Sputnik South Ossetia.
The media also reported that the activity of the Tskhinval garment factory, where production was revived by Russian BTK-4 owned by Taymuraz Bolloev, can be seen as an example of a successful investment project. Even if the factory showed loss during the first two years, it became profitable by the end of last year.
Another piece of news was on the upcoming visit of Iranian businessmen to South Ossetia who, in accordance with an earlier agreement, will address issues related to the implementation of a number of investment projects in conjunction with local partners.
At a meeting with energy experts, Leonid Tibilov noted that because of the power outages caused by accidents in power lines running from Russia, he decided to build small hydroelectric power plants on the territory of South Ossetia.
Society, Culture, and Sports
News on the case of murder of Tskhinval resident Anna Sanakoeva was discussed in December. on On December 9, the court returned the case files to the State Prosecutor with a request to determine the motives of the crime. The accused Kulukhov, former head of the Investigative Department of Znaur region, did not denied guilt and complicity with the murder. Meanwhile, according to the prosecutor, the results of the tests carried out by russian experts from the Supreme State Center of Forensic and Criminal Examinations of the Defence Ministry suggest that the “Kulukov’s arguments and testimony lose reasoning”.
As reported in the media, Leonid Tibilov personally visited the families affected by the fire that broke out in Tskhinval. He ordered to deal with the situation as soon as possible after talking to the owners of the houses. At the time of the preparation of the review, According to Deputy Prime Minister Eric Pukhayev, “The city administration has secured temporary shelter for the victims of the fire. Residents of two households continue living in their houses that have been repaired. We have temporarily rented private apartments for four families whose houses still need to be restored. A homeowner whose house was burned down completely has been put on a waiting list for housing”.
The media reported that Head of the State Committee of Information and Press Vyacheslav Gobozov initiated the establishment of the state’s annual journalism award with the working title “Arvaydæn” (Sky Mirror). Gobozov believes that the establishment of the award will help to “improve the skills and qualifications of journalists, give an additional impetus for a more dynamic and productive work” and hopes that the proposal will be supported by the president. In his opinion, if the award is established, the first ceremony will be carried out by the end of 2015.
The media discussed the campaign carried out by children from South Ossetia at the children’s rehabilitation center of the monastery in Alagir (North Ossetia). The children came out with an intiative of a charity concert, the revenue of which (more than one hundred thousand rubles) was given to the construction of the Cathedral of the Alania Epiphany Women’s Monastery in Alagir. The center has received more than 1,300 children living in South Ossetia. According to the head of the ensemble “Kaft” Maya Chetion, “All of them came back with gratitude to the staff of the center and the nuns. That’s why, learning about the fundrainsing for the cathedral, they wanted to make a contribution”. She also noted that the center was built after the terrorist attack in Beslan and has been working for nine years. Children from South Ossetia have been visiting the center since 2008.
The coach of the South Ossetian national team of hand-to-hand fighting Mamed Kulumbegov informed the media that the team under his leadership became prizewinners the World Junior Championship, held in Kaliningrad on November 13-16. He said, “The competitions were organized and held at the highest level. Our athletes won three bronze medals”. More than 50 athletes attended the competition.
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