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Public Defender’s Statement on Rustavi 2 Case

The Public Defender of Georgia is responding to the judgment delivered by the European Court of Human Rights on 18 July 2019 in the case of Rustavi 2 Broadcasting Company and Others v. Georgia.

First of all, it should be noted that the Public Defender's special interest in this case was the protection of freedom of expression and pluralistic media environment in the country. The Public Defender of Georgia focused on these very issues in her amicus curiae brief submitted to the European Court of Human Rights. According to today's judgment, unfortunately, the European Court did not have the opportunity to consider the alleged violation of the broadcasting company’s freedom of expression on its merits due to certain procedural circumstances.

The Public Defender of Georgia emphasizes that a healthy media environment has a vital role in a democratic society; free media is an important prerequisite for promoting human rights and good governance in the country. Taking into account the above, the Public Defender hopes that the changes made to the ownership of Rustavi 2 based on the decision of the European Court of Human Rights will not negatively affect the pluralistic media environment in the country and that the labour rights and professional freedom of journalists employed in the Rustavi 2 TV company will be protected.

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