Georgian PM hails Svetitskhovloba holiday as “symbol of country’s values”

Georgian prime minister Irakli Garibashvili on Friday attended a service in Svetitskhoveli cathedral. Photo: IPN, 14 Oct 2022 - 14:18, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian prime minister Irakli Garibashvili on Friday hailed the Svetitskhovloba holiday as a “symbol of all the precious values that unite us - our faith, spiritual strength, unity and Christian values”, in comments coming for the celebration of the ancient capital Mtskheta and the Svetitskhoveli cathedral, a UNESCO world heritage monument in the city.

Speaking to the media following the service in the second largest church in the country, the head of the government said both Georgia and the world were going through a “very complicated period” and said he hoped “thanks to God, our church and prayers, we will pass through this time peacefully”.

Praising the role of patriarch Ilia II, the leader of the country’s Orthodox church, the PM said “we should listen and follow the wise advice of his holiness”, adding “we have great hope for our church, our patriarch [and] should all unite around the church”.

He added the public should take examples from “unity” being shown through the ages and ”must continue to move forward”. 

While marking the holiday, Garibashvili also said “no-one is in a festive mood today”, in reference to the tragic death of a minor following an incident in Tbilisi’s Vake Park on Thursday. 

The government head again extended his condolences to the parents of the deceased 13-year-old girl who died after being electrocuted in the recreational area’s fountain.