Georgian High Court ruled in favor of changing owners of the opposition TV company
Big board of the Georgian High Court ruled to return Rustavi-1, the main opposition TV company to the former owners. 60 percent share goes to Kibar Khalvashi, 40 percent – to Panorama LTD. The decision is final and cannot be appealed.
Company management, journalists, opposition parties and most NGOs consider the demands, advanced by Kibar Khilvashi (believed to be loyal to the authorities) unreasonable, and qualify the process as an attempt to establish control over the independent TV company.
Rustavi-2 general manager Nika Gvaramia said, they intend to ask the Georgian Constitutional Court and the European Court on Human Rights to put the ruling on hold. According to Gvaramia, the Georgian government “chose to legitimize itself” and “it is high time for the Georgian people to decide, whether they need freedom of speech or Bidzina Ivanishvili (a billionaire, former prime-minister, informal leader of the ruling party)”.
Rustavi-2 informs of it`s supporters gathering by the office after the court ruling was made public. Prior to that they have been ptotesting by the High Court all day long.