Israelis fail to milk Georgian of $90 million

Last month Georgian authorities arrested two Israeli businemen for offering a bribe of US$7 million to country’s deputy finance minister, Avtandil Kharaidze, to persuade him to abandon Tbilisi’s appeal against arbitration decision by the World Bank, awarding US$90 million to the two Israeli citizen, Ron Fuchs and Zeeve Frenkel.

A court in Tbilisi has ordered that the two Israeli crooks be kept in custody for 60 days, the maximum period allowed under Georgian law for the pre-trail detention. The authorities are looking for Greek businessman Ioannis Kardassopoulos, the third suspect in the bribery case.

The dispute between these three businessmen and the Georgian government revolves around the oil sector transactions between Tramex and Georgian state oil company through their joint venture. The three had major shares in Tramex which had obtained valuable rights to develop the East-West Samgori-Batumi pipeline in Georgia, and to build other energy infrastructure. However, Tbilisi canceled the contract in mid-1990s when it decided to join an international consortium of Baku-Tiblisi-Ceyhan pipeline, which would ultimately transport large volumes of crude from oil fields in the Caspian Sea to Western markets.

The three sued Georgian government for US$100 million compensation (just a fraction of US$93 billion which Germany had to pay to Israel for the Nazi crimes) for their loses. They hired war criminal Henry Kissinger’s law firm in 2003. Henry Kissinger made representations to Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze (born 1927), who was forced to resign in the aftermath of CIA-Mossad engineered Rose Revolution.

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