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Georgian party tells president to give up palace for refugees

Posted by seumasach on October 4, 2008


TBILISI, October 4 (RIA Novosti) – Georgia’s opposition Labor Party called on the president Saturday to sell off his new residence to buy accommodation for people left homeless by the August conflict over South Ossetia.

Mikheil Saakashvili’s new residence in Tbilisi is nearing completion, the Labor party said, estimating its cost to the state at half a billion dollars.

Party head Iosif Shatberashvili offered the president two choices: “Transfer more than $500 million to our children and young people for the construction of schools and kindergartens in the regions affected by the August events, or immediately sell the presidential palace and give the proceeds to refugees to buy apartments.”

Georgia attempted to retake control of South Ossetia in early April, sparking a brief conflict with Russia, which forced Georgian troops out of the republic and recognized it and another breakaway region, Abkhazia, as independent states.

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