21 July, 2011


Interview with Editor-in-Chief of Rezonansi newspaper, who met with MIA Head

Despite the fact that many people did not expect any compromise on the part of the Minister of Internal Affairs regarding the case of the arrested photo reporters, the journalists still went ahead and met with MIA Head Vano Merabishvili.

During the meeting the latter was bursting with irony and jokes, but left no room for allowances and compromises. As the members of the delegation said, they returned from the transparent

building with a bag of unanswered questions. The Minister told them a story of bad boys who decided to betray their homeland and collaborated with Russian intelligence. We talked to Lasha Tughushi, Editor-in-Chief of Rezonansi newspaper, who participated in the meeting.



A: Unfortunately, all the questions were ignored, the main one among them. The Ministry did not tell us the real story about the photo reporters. What is more, he refused to meet our demand and release the arrested people on bail, as well as to declassify the case and make the case materials publicly available. He said that everythin will be transparent during the court. We asked him to publish the case materials before the court so that the public could understand everything as it should. Of course, lawyers should have been involved in anything that we demanded. The Minister’s face changed to that of a baffled man on hearing that all the case materials were classified (?!). Then a hectic discussion followed. We proposed to him to bring over all the case materials for its joint observation, if we were wrong and the case was not a secretive undertaking. He suddenly tried to change the subject by offering to continue the talk but leaving our proposition unanswered. It was strange. It was unbelievable that he did not know that all the case documents were classified. Neither did he know as to what documents were signed by the lawyers.

Q: What was new in the information supplied by the Minister?

A: It turns out that the investigation has phone conversations from as early as 2004. The conversations involved Okrokov and Sinitsin from Russian special services (so called GRU) - 24 calls to Okrokov and 13 calls to Sinitsin. However, after identifying the two Russians as spies, the photo reporters ceased phone conversations with them and switched to other GRU officers. The phone number was registered on the name of a certain woman born in Tskhinvali. The MIA Head mentioned a number of interesting facts but fell short of substantiating them with evidence. In addition, all details in his story lacked logical connections to each other. It was therefore hard to make sense of the story. I managed to deduce from this chaos that they don’t have any evidence and arguments. Yet, they need something to cling to. Where could they get them? From the confessions which are extracted one after another from the detainees.

Q: So, you say that the Minister was full of irony during the meeting?

A: Yes, he was in the joking mood. I heard from my colleagues that when we were entering his office room, he said he was going to meet the synod of journalists. Surely, the phrase was ironic. It is as if he was ignorant of Abdaladze’s hunger strike and learnt about it only from the media. One must be not of this world to believe in such nonsense.

Q: What did you hope for when you entered his office room and what did you bring out from there?

A: I suspected that they had nothing to consolidate the case. My suspicions hold on till today. I only hoped I would manage to have at least some of them released on bail. This would have been a decent compromise on their part, which could have embellished their image and amount to a correct and sensible move on their part. Unfortunately, the contrary happened. Again they chose the worst way. They obtained so called confessions using manipulations.

Now they may showcase video-taped confessions through television. Maybe somebody will believe in it. But I doubt there will be many of them because we know how some people have been induced to make fictitious confessions. It’s bad that nihilism in respect of law enforcers gains increasing momentum. What would be the end result? For sure, the gap in the public is going to widen further on. We will continue to lag behind the developed world more and more. The situation in the country will worsen.


Other Stories
Donald Tusk: "The collapse of the Soviet Union was very positive"
I want to say loudly from this tribune - the collapse of the Soviet Union was very positive, - Donald Tusk,
Donald Tusk reads a quote from Vazha Pshavela’s letter in Georgian
President of the Council of Europe Donald Tusk read a quote from Georgian writer
Economist: “An unwelcome Russian visitor has helped to revive an old antagonism”
Economist has recently published an article reviewing the recent events taking place in Georgia.
Russian Duma supports sanctions against Georgia, President Putin opposes
The Russian Duma supported sanctions against Georgia.
Prosecutor: Individuals planned to overthrow the state government
On the night of 20th of June, 2019, individuals were planned to violently overthrow the state government through uprising,
Court releases Nika Melia on GEL 30, 000 bail
The Tbilisi City Court sentenced Nika Melia to GEL 30, 000 bail at today’s court hearing.
Parliament suspends Nika Melia's MP's immunity
Nika Melia, the member of the opposition “United National Movement” party, has arrived at Tbilisi City Court.
"Russian Church blackmails Georgian Patriarchate" - Claims Ukraine's Rada member
Victor Yelenskyj was the head of the Ukrainian delegation at that fateful Interparliamentary Ortho­dox Assembly in Tbilisi that sparked the protests still ongoing to this day.
What the Protests in Tbilisi Mean for Relations with Russia
The protests in the center of Tbilisi over the Russian MP’s presence in Georgian parliament caused a nation-wide outburst against the ruling Georgian Dream party and Russia.
Government agrees to one of the protesters demands: Proportional Elections in 2020
The government has agreed to hold proportional parliamentary elections in Georgia in 2020.
Russia bans flights to Georgia from July 8
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree yesterday prohibiting Russian airlines from carrying Russian citizens to Georgia from July 8.
Zakaria Kutsnashvili renounces his MP mandate
Zakaria Kutsnashvili, who was the head of the Georgian delegation in the Inter-parliamentary Session on Orthodoxy, has renounced his MP mandate.
Police use teargas, rubber bullets against protesters, says Human Rights Watch
Riot police in Tbilisi fired rubber bullets and used teargas without warning against thousands of nonviolent protesters
Russian lawmaker demands “official apology” from Tbilisi
Tbilisi should give its formal apology to Russia for the provocations against Russian delegates in the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy,
Georgian police used teargas, rubber Bullets and water cannon against protesters
Police in Georgia used tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannon to stop protesters entering the country’s parliament on Friday.
Gavrilov: "Russia and Georgia are united by the brotherly orthodox union"
The citizens of Georgia are protesting against the conduct of the Inter-Parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy in Georgia, which was led by Russian Deputy Sergey Gavrilov.
Inter-Parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy canceled following public outrage
The session of Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy held at Parliament of Georgia has been canceled after the protest.
The Russian deputy in the Chairman’s chair of the Parliament of Georgia
The Interparliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy is taking place between the 19th and 22nd of June in Tbilisi.
Michael Carpenter about Georgia's open policy with Russia
Michael Carpenter has recently tweeted about Georgia's open policy with Russia.
Another Georgian David Arakhamia to work with President Zelensky
Georgian businessman David Arakhamia also known as David Brown is another Georgian to join President Zelensky’s team in Ukraine.
What Do the EP Elections Mean for Georgia?
The European Parliament elections are over, with the liberal wing sighing with relief, while the right wingers can smugly point to the increase to 25% of representation in the world 's second largest democratically elected parliament.
PM Mamuka Bakhtadze met with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo
Prime Minister of Georgia Mamuka Bakhtadze met with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo on the 11th of June.
Zourabichvili talks about Russian occupation at Labour Conference
President of Georgia Salome Zourabichvili took part in the 108th Session of the International Labour Conference,
UN General Assembly passes Georgia IDP Resolution
The UN General Assembly has adopted the Resolution on „Status of Internally Displaced Persons and Refugees from Abkhazia, Georgia and the Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, Georgia”
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko offers Mikheil Saakashvili to chair the Udar Party
After arrival of ex-president of Georgia and ex-Governor of Ukraine's Odesa region Mikheil Saakashvili in Ukraine there were speculations about whether he would be offered political positions.
GEL Exchange Rate
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
July 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
29 30 31