Censorship threat - joint statement by 11 media outlets


The draft law prepared by the National Communications Commission is a mechanism for monitoring the editorial policy of independent broadcasters by the state – says a joint statement issued by 11 media organizations.

This is a legislative initiative of the National Communications Commission, which gives the regulator the right to appoint a desirable interim manager in the media. The signatory broadcasters believe that prepared by the National Communications Commission and submitted to the Parliament by the Government draft law on Electronic Communications and on amendments to the Law on Broadcasting (N07-2 / 494; 01.07.2020) poses a serious threat to the freedom of expression and enables the state to interfere in the editorial policy of independent broadcasters.

The proposed legislative amendments are in conflict with Article 6 of the Constitution of Georgia, Articles 6 and 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Freedoms and the Directive on Audiovisual Media Services of the European Parliament and the Council of Europe.

The amendments unjustifiably violate freedom of expression, realization of the property protection and the court protection rights and are a mechanism enabling the state to exercise full control over the activities of broadcasters and authorized persons without any judicial control.

The decisions made by the National Communications Commission to date and the misinterpretation of the legislation, which was largely directed against critical broadcasters, give us reason to assert that the amendments to the draft law introduce censorship and give full power to the National Communications Commission, which will certainly harm the media environment. With this in mind, we call on the National Communications Commission, the Government of Georgia and the Parliament of Georgia to suspend/postpone discussion of the draft law and ensure that all stakeholders, including broadcasters, non-governmental and international organizations and the diplomatic corps, participate are involved in legislative process –the joint statement reads. Signatory broadcasters:

  • Mtavari Channel
  • Caucasia
  • TV Pirveli 
  • Formula
  • Media Holding Hereti
  • Radio Hereti Radio
  • Tbilisi Radio Citrus
  • Alliance of Regional Broadcasters
  • Radio Fortuna
  • Green Radio