PARTIALLY DEMOCRATIC GEORGIA - IMPORTANT FOR FREEDOM HOUSE
12 May, 2011
PARTIALLY DEMOCRATIC GEORGIA - IMPORTANT FOR FREEDOM HOUSE

Special report from Washington


At the Conference dedicated to World Press Freedom Day 2011, which took place in the United States on May 1-6, Freedom House made a presentation of its findings of annual Freedom of the Press index, where Georgia got a status of a partially free country.

We were lucky to meet Karin Karlekar, Senior Editor of Freedom House to find out her opinion – whether having a partially free media means to be a partially democratic country.

 


Q.

During the last two days here in Washington D.C. we have been hearing tremendous figures about the journalists who have been killed, imprisoned, tortured or assaulted. In some cases governmental involvements in such actions are obvious and it hampers to reveal the real initiators. How often Freedom House is involved in investigations of such cases?
A. You are absolutely right. Rather often governments are responsible for such cases of attacks or in worst cases - of murders. When it happens we encourage governments and really urge them to prosecute and investigate the cases properly because the issue of impunity is a very big problem for a number of countries around the world. So the governments must be sure that their legal system and judicial system function appropriately and properly in order to investigate these cases.
Q. Do you agree that, on the one hand, we cannot achieve democracy without the freedom of press and, on other hand, we cannot get freedom of press without democracy?
A. Definitely! I mean if we look at democracy in terms of your elections, Georgia does have it already but if you look at democracy in terms of whole echo systems that help democracy, than press freedom is really a central element of a strong democracy. I mean that the press, at its first function, is a watchdog; it helps uncover corruption, hold the government accountable and get closer to people. You know, all these are important to create a strong, stable and healthy democracy. On the other hand, it’s also very difficult to have freedom of press without having a democratic government that is willing to uphold press freedom. We see many cases around the world that the governments, which have no freedom of press, usually are very poorly trained.  However, many countries in the world do their elections in terms of press freedom;   hence, to create democracy it’s very important to have media freedom too and governments should respect press freedom.
Q. Yesterday Freedom House made a presentation of the findings of Freedom House’s annual Freedom of the Press index, where Georgia received a partially free status. Does it mean that in terms of democracy Georgia is a partially democratic country?
A. Yes, it is.
Q. And what are the steps Georgia should take to get the status of free media?
A. Actually, in terms of media freedom Georgia already has, I would say, a pretty good legal framework and media transparency is an ongoing issue in the country; though it’s a fact that it’s very difficult to find correct and accurate information about media owners and particularly in electronic media and as examples, Imedi and Public Television come to mind. I believe they will look into these issues. The Parliament was debating the issues of legislation on media transparency and this is also a very positive step. As to the cases of harassments and attacks on journalists, we don’t see as many cases as before. And I would really focus on regulatory issues at the moment and I believe that this is an area where the government could do something positive and has the power to do it; I would encourage Georgia to move along the path. Georgia is very important for us. Today your country is far from free category in terms of its numerical ranking but taking into account that Georgia is doing much better than many of its neighbors and together with Ukraine this is one of the best performing countries among the former Soviet Union Republics (Actually, Ukraine lags a bit behind), we believe Georgia is going in the right direction and we encourage the government to respect media freedom that will keep Georgia on the right path.  
May 3, 2011.
Washington D.C.
USA

 

Print
Other Stories
16 persons detained in connection with release of secret recordings
According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, 16 persons have been detained in connection with the release of secret recordings.
Eka Beselia: “You will not be able to stop me, to make me stay silent, to disappear me!!!
MP Eka Beselia has posted an open letter on her Facebook page, following reports of sex tape leak.
CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX 2018: Georgia got 58 out of 100
According to the CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX 2018, Georgia scored 58 and was consequently ranked as 41 among 180 countries.
83% of Georgians support integration into the NATO, 78% into the EU – NDI
83% of NDI respondents support Georgia's integration into the EU, - the poll results of the National Democratic Institute say.
January 25 – birthday of the second president of Georgia
The 25th of January marks the 91st birthday of the second president of Georgia Eduard Shevardnadze.
Jack Shepherd from the UK detained in Georgia
A British man who went on the run last year after killing a woman in a speedboat crash on the River Thames has been detained in the former Soviet state of Georgia - says Reuters.
Georgia recognizes Juan Guaido as an interim president
Georgia recognized Venezuelan parliament speaker Juan Guaidó as an interim president.
Georgian PM aims to turn Georgian into a center of the region
Georgian PM Mamuka Bakhtadze is in Davos to participate in World Economic Forum. He gave interviews to two media outlets – CNBC TV and Deutsche Welle.
Judges that served the violent regime of Saakashvili should not be in the Supreme Court, says Eka Beselia
Eka Beselia, a member of the parliamentary majority, held a press conference in the Parliament today.
Possible confrontation within the Georgian Dream Party?
Eka Beselia, a member of the ruling party, will hold a news conference in the Parliament at 12:00 today.
13 dead from swine flu in Georgia, emergency treatment to be free for all
13 people died from swine flu in Georgia so far, but there is no risk of epidemy, says Georgian Minister of Health.
Georgian president Salome Zurabishvili not ready for launching diplomatic dialogue with Russia
I'm not ready to give any advice to the legislative body about the launch of the diplomatic relations or dialogue with Russia
Georgia suffering the steepest drop in democratic quality in eastern Europe
According to the statistics for the Democracy Index 2018, published by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU),
“Let’s see if you can wrestle with women”- Interior minister to the opposition
Female Police officers were mobilized in front of the Gurjaani District Court where the case of Davit Kirkitadze, the member of the United Opposition was considered.
Georgian citizens can apply for temporary residency in France
150 permits for young specialists as well as additional 500 permits will be granted each year to go to work to France.
Numbers of Georgians seeking asylum in Germany has significantly decreased
According to Ambassador of Georgia to Germany Elguja Khokrishvili, the drop of asylum requests has been due to recently taken steps.
U.S. Congress supports Georgia with a new bill
Unanimously the U.S. approved the act, which calls for imposing sanctions on Russian actors for the commission of serious human rights abuses in the occupied Georgian territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
‘Horn wrestling’ between opposition party leader and police chef
Yesterday on the 16th of December, clashes occurred between Nika Melia, leader of the United National Movement and Teimuraz Kupatadze, head of patrol police department in the village of Velistsikhe, Kakheti region (eastern part of Georgia).
Salome Zourabichvili officially becomes the fifth president of Georgia
The inauguration ceremony of president-elect Salome Zourabichvili took place in Telavi, Kakheti (eastern region of Georgia) on the 16th of December.
Fight erupt in paliament between Georgian MPs during session
Verbal and physical confrontation has occurred between MPs in the parliament.
Famous Georgians invited at the Inauguration of Salome Zourabichvili
The inauguration ceremony of president elect Salome Zourabishvili will be held in Telavi, Kakheti (eastern region of Georgia) on the 16th of December.
Exclusive interview with Lincoln Mitchell, American political analyst and Georgia expert
More than 20,000 people responded to the appeal of the opposition and gathered in front of the former parliament building in downtown Tbilisi last Sunday.
The after-pains of the presidential election in Georgia
Yesterday evening, at a meeting with his supporters in the Philharmonic Hall, the defeated candidate Grigol Vashadze made it clear that he didn’t recognize the result of the presidential elections and called for early parliamentary elections.
National democratic institute publishes their findings about the presidential elections in Georgia
A delegation of the National Democratic Institute, which included observers from five countries, analyzed the election process.
International media about the runoff presidential elections in Georgia
Although it didn’t hit the headlines, newspapers and broadcast around the world report about Salome Zurabishvili as the first woman who became president in Georgia.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
15.02.2019
16.02.2019
USD
1
USD
2.6420
2.6413
EUR
1
EUR
2.9778
2.9791
GBP
1
GBP
3.3915
3.3851
RUB
100
RUB
3.9577
3.9608
Other Stories
On 26 May, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, joined celebrations in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi
Violation of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by Assad regime has been strictly criticized
Exactly one year ago, Georgia was granted visa-free travel with the European Union.
Georgia’s ex-president president Mikheil Saakashvili's supporters managed to free detained Mikheil Saakashvili in the center of Kiev.
The US Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly congratulates Georgia on Independence Day.
The regulations on the introduction of visa-free travel for citizens of Georgia have been officially signed in Brussels.
The entire Georgia is involved in Secret Santa game, which means that people are sending gifts to each other secretly
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia is taking part in NATO Ministerial underway in Brussels, Belgium.
A special squad has been mobilized at the 48th polling station in Marneuli, Kvemo Kartli region.
Two politicians in Georgia have come to blows during a live TV debate ahead of the country’s parliamentary elections, Euronews reports.
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.6413
EUR
1
EUR
2.9791
GBP
1
GBP
3.3851
RUB
100
RUB
3.9608
February 2019
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28