10 March 2020, 11:14
Georgian activists stand up for "Adjara TV" journalists
Teona Bakuridze, a news presenter at the "Adjara TV", has been removed from work; and this continued the series of decisions made by the new director of the TV channel and aimed at suppressing the freedom of speech. This was stated by the NGO "Centre for Human Rights Training and Monitoring" (CHRTM), which demanded to reinstated the fired reporters of the news division.
On November 22, 2019, the Board of the Adjara's Public Broadcaster elected Giorgi Kokhreidze to head the TV channel. On February 24, 2020, protesters in Batumi accused the new leadership of the TV Company of unjustly dismissing employees, in particular, of Maya Merkviladze, the deputy director of the news service. On February 28, Shorena Glonti, the head of the news service, was fired. On March 1, the CHRTM called on the Parliament and Supreme Council of the Adjara Autonomy to pay attention to the situation in the "Adjara" TV Company.
On February 2, Natiya Zoidze, a deputy director of the "Adjara" TV, announced her resignation after complaints about new director's attempts to change the editorial policy. Mr Kokhreidze is linked to the "Georgian Dream" Party; and his actions are aimed at injection self-censorship into his subordinates, the analysts interviewed by the "Caucasian Knot" believe.
The CHRTM intends to defend the rights of the employees of the "Adjara" TV Company in court.
"Our main demand is to invalidate the disciplinary proceedings in connection with the dismissal of employees and restore their labour rights," a representative of the CHRTM has stated.
Author: Galina Gotua; Source: CK correspondent