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Georgian authorities deny sabotaging opposition TV

by | Feb 17, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – Georgia’s Revenue Service says it can not understand the charges made by a billionaire opposition politician that his TV van was damaged in customs.

The revenue service said in a statement Thursday that Bidzina Ivanishvili’s claim that TV equipment he was importing was damaged while in customs in Batumi is “incomprehensible and unacceptable”.

The claim was made Tuesday by Ivanishvili’s press office. It said Ivanishvili’s company Igrika, which owns the broadcasting rights to a TV station, was importing a broadcasting and production van, but after picking it up in customs there were damages to the expensive equipment.

But Thursday the revenue service made clear that the vehicle only had been subject to a routine check in accordance with Georgian legislation.

“We note that the representatives of the Igrika Ltd never asked to attend the checking procedure. The goods didn’t get into the red corridor,” the statement says, referring to the option to declare goods for taxation. The van was opened only in order to check its content, the statement says.

It goes on to say that the revenue service wasn’t informed about the damage until five days after the van had been picked up from customs on February 9, at which time Igrika’s representatives didn’t express any complaints about damages.



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