'Rustavi-2' TV studio. Screenshot from RTVI Youtube Channel, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J2uPSif-v38

21 August 2019, 14:15

Oppositionists see political motives in dismissals of "Rustavi-2" reporters

On August 20, the general director of the "Rustavi-2" TV Channel announced the dismissals of at least seven employees of the TV Channel. Dismissed reporters are supporters of the "United National Movement" (UNM) Party, and their dismissals point to a change in the editorial policy of the independent TV Company, note opposition politicians.

At a briefing held on August 20, Paata Saliya announced, in particular, the dismissals of presenters Yekaterina Kvesitadze, Nanuka Zhorzholiani, Giorgi Gabuniya, and producer Giorgi Laperashvili. Paata Saliya explained the dismissal of Yekaterina Kvesitadze and Nanuka Zhorzholiani by a conflict of interests. Giorgi Gabuniya and Giorgi Laperashvili were dismissed because of "receiving large amounts of money, which Kibar Khalvashi intends to demand to return through court," Paata Saliya reports.

In his conversation with the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent, Giorgi Akhvlediani, one of the leaders of the "Democratic Movement-United Georgia" Party, noted that the dismissed employees of the "Rustavi-2" TV Channel were supporters of the "United National Movement" Party. "The TV Channel has been turned into the press centre of the 'United National Movement', and the director began to dismiss UNM Party members," Giorgi Akhvlediani said.

Kibar Khalvashi was never interested in the media business, and when he got back the "Rustavi-2" TV Company, he intended to return all the funds he had to spend on it when the TV Company was registered under his name, the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent was told by Ramaz Sakvarelidze, a political analyst from the "Club of Independent Experts".

Ramaz Sakvarelidze associates the beginning of the change in the editorial policy of the "Rustavi-2" TV Company with the fact that it worked in the interests of the UNM Party, and it is unacceptable for Kibar Khalvashi, since it was the UNM Party which "seized the TV Channel from him and he lost his business during its ruling."

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on August 21, 2019 at 10:57 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Inna Kukudzhanova; Source: CK correspondent

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