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Georgian prime minister resigns for health reasons -2

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TBILISI, January 30 (RIA Novosti) - The Georgian prime minister announced on Friday he had resigned for health reasons just three months after being appointed to the post.

"Today I went to the president and asked him to choose another candidate for the position," Grigol Mgaloblishvili said live on Georgian TV.

Mgaloblishvili, 35, who was named the head of government in November, said he had suggested the president appoint Nikoloz Gilauri, a deputy premier and finance minister, as the new prime minister.

Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili proposed the candidacy of Gilauri later on Friday.

If the candidacy of Gilauri is approved by the government, he will become Georgia's fifth premier since the country's "Rose Revolution" in November 2003 that brought Saakashvili to power.

The Georgian prime minister, who was ambassador to Turkey for four years, has been diagnosed with a kidney disease and underwent medical treatment in Germany in December.

Having returned to Tbilisi on January 17, Mgaloblishvili fell ill again as a result of high blood pressure and underwent a further week of treatment in Germany.

Media reports in December said Mgaloblishvili submitted his resignation after a row with Mikheil Saakashvili during which the Georgian president hit him in the face and threw a phone at him.

The president slammed the report as "complete nonsense" and said the prime minister's illness was due to the "heavy stress" of the job.

The previous Georgian premier Lado Gurgenidze, 38, resigned from his office in October. Saakashvili said Gurgenidze had to quit citing constitutional amendments that obliged the president to appoint a new premier after parliamentary polls that were held in May.

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