TV producer questioned in Georgia after program on alleged assassination plot against Georgian journalist
The Georgian State Security Service interrogated Nodar Meladze, the main producer of TV channel Pirveli, after the channel released a programme with details on the preparation of an alleged assassination plot against TV journalist Giorgi Gabunia.
On June 15, director of TV channel Mtavari Arkhi Nika Gvaramia, stated that during a special operation in Tbilisi, a Russian citizen had been arrested, who, on the order of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, was planning to kill a journalist of that channel, Giorgi Gabunia.
According to Gvaramia, the assassination was to be in revenge for the fact that a year ago, Gabunia cursed Russian President Vladimir Putin live on the air.
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Speaking about the interrogation, Meladze said that investigators were interested in the assumption of the authors of the program that the arrested Russian citizen, Vasambek Bokov, actually has a different name.
Investigators asked if the channel covered this topic on its own initiative or at someone’s request, Nodar Meladze said.
During Pirveli’s programme, the brother of Vasambek Bokov said that he had repeatedly watched the video of the State Security Service of Georgia in which the detention was recorded, claiming he did not recognise the man as his brother.
As a result of this, the assumption arose that the person detained by the Georgian security forces was not Vasambek Bokov, and had only used his documents.
“I was asked about any unpublished material that may be related to the Gabunia case. However, I replied that, by law, we have the right not to testify on information obtained as part of professional journalistic activities,” Nodar Meladze said after interrogation.
Security officials also interrogated the author of the program, Maka Chikhladze.
She said that she was working on the second part of a journalistic investigation, in which an important document related to this case would be published.