Ex-President Shevardnadze was born 25 January 1928, in the Gurian city of Lanchkhuti. As Soviet Foreign Minister from 1985 until 1990, he became one of Georgia’s most internationally known politicians and has said “I’m proud that I had a part in ending the Cold War, in the reunification of Germany, the destruction of nuclear weapons, disarmament”. He returned to Georgia in 1992 and was probably more popular abroad than at home but became President of Georgia in 1995 until ousted from power in 2003 in the bloodless Rose Revolution. Although a controversial figure, since his fall from power and retirement he was able to live peacefully in Tbilisi, despite occassional protesters camped outside his residence, until his death after a long illness earlier this week. A book of condolence will be available to sign at the Georgian Embassy, 4 Russell Gardens, London W14 8EZ, from 10am to 3pm on the 10th and 11th of July. For further comment please see the following links: The National Interest; BBC.