7 Feb 2014 - 15:25
A State Agency on Religious Affairs will be created under the Prime Minister of Georgia. This decision was made today at a Government meeting.
The State Minister for Reconciliation and Civil Equality Paata Zakareishvili said the agency would be a public entity and its regulations had already been approved.
"Finally a state structure will exist in Georgia which implements the country’s policy on religious issues. Before this project was introduced, I was instructed by the Prime Minister to manage these aspects, so it is very important that a special agency has been created,” Zakareishvili said.
The Minister also said that the function of this agency would be to adequately spend money selected from the state budget in order to compensate the loss of different religious groups.
"The Agency will also be interested in education and property issues. It will work under the Prime Minister because we want the agency to be of a very high status. The head of the agency has not been decided and this decision will be made by the Prime Minister.”
Zakareishvili said the Agency would be responsible for working with 4.5 million GEL funding – the amount defined by the state to help religious groups.