Journalists of various media outlets have held rallies in Tbilisi and Batumi before the start of the Batumi International Conference , stating that they will be in danger while Irakli Garibashvili is the Prime Minister of Georgia.
Protest rallies of journalists has started in Georgia following the death of TV Pirveli cameraman Lekso Lashkarava.
Lashkarava, 36, who was attacked in the office of the Shame Movement by over 30 right-wing activists during the Tbilisi Pride counter rally on June 5, had received a concussion, facial bone fractures and multiple bruises and went under medical surgery.
During the rally Journalists of Mtavari Arkhi, TV Pirveli, Kavkasia and Formula TV channels have also addressed the European Council President Charles Michel, who is visiting Georgia for the 17th International Conference – Georgia’s European Way.
In an official letter to Charles Michel journalists say that high-ranking officials are discrediting them and that they are ‘objects of insult’. Photo: Mzia Saganelidze/RFE/RL.
You should know that as long as this man, Irakli Garibashvili is the PM of Georgia, the lives of almot all journalists and citizens are in danger, as well as the dignity and free future of the country. You are meeting a man like this today and we want you to know the truth”, said journalists who gathered at the Government Administration building.
The letter also reads that PM Garibashvili is responsible for the punitive actions against journalists and civil activists that took place on July 5-6 in Tbilisi during the Tbilisi Pride counter rally.
Dozens of civil activists have also gathered today before the start of Batumi International Conference to protest the violent attacks on journalists on July 5.
‘No to violence’, ‘Homophobia kills’, ‘Democracy is in jeopardy’ – these were the main massages of the rally members to the high-ranking officials from Europe.
The conference was attended by the President of the European Council and the presidents of Moldova, and Ukraine.
'Here should have been the speech of the Prime Minister of Georgia' - reads the caption. Photo: video grab.
Mtavari Arkhi has stopped broadcasting Batumi International Conference during the speech of PM Garibashvili.
“Here should have been the speech of the Prime Minister of Georgia”, the caption appeared on the screen.