Lithuania plans to switch from calling Georgia ‘Gruzia,’ and call the country instead by its Georgian-language name, ‘Sakartvelo,’ and will refer to Georgians as Sakartvelians, Lithuanian media reports.
Baltnews reports that Speaker of Lithuanian Parliament, Viktoras Pranckietis, came up with the initiative of ‘giving such a gift to the Georgians.’
“Georgians don’t like the word ‘Gruzia.’ They like when people use ‘Sakartvelo’ instead,” said Pranckietis on September 25.
Pranckietis’ initiative already has the support of other Members of Parliament. The change is planned to enter into force in 2018.
Pranckietis says he was told about Georgians’ preference for the word ‘Sakartvelo’ directly from Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili, as well as from the Georgian Ambassador to Lithuania, Khatuna Salukvadze, and from locals during a visit in Tbilisi.
“This will be a wonderful gift to Georgians,” emphasized Ambassador Salukvadze.