TV director and UNM politician to be questioned about coup plan

by | Oct 30, 2015

Nika Gvaramia (right) and Giga Bokeria on their way to State Security Service (IPN)

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s State Security Service, which has kept on probing into alleged coup attempt since October 24, summoned director general of opposition TV Channel Rustavi 2 and a prominent member of the United National Movement for questioning on Friday over wiretapped audio recordings of their conversation with Mikheil Saakashvli, where they discuss possible scenario of violent resistance against the law enforcers.

The security agency issued a statement that it is in the process of identifying origins and authenticity of the audiotapes published on Ukrainian website and then republished by many Georgian media outlets. However, the authenticity has already been confirmed by all involved in the conversations.

Levan Izoria, deputy head of the agency, said at a briefing the Service had appealed to the Ukrainian counterparts for assistance. The agency applied all measures to prevent possible state coup, he added.

At the agency’s doorsteps both, Nika Gvaramia of Rustavi 2 TV and Giga Bokeria, former president Mikheil Saakashvili’s key ally, flatly denounced allegations over their involvement in the coup attempt.

“One is not able to organize coup at the office of Rustavi 2. This is not public facility,” Gvaramia said, adding that in the recording his friend, Mikheil Saakashvili, merely shared his opinion over developments going on with Rustavi 2 litigation.

Giga Bokeria also disavowed from the allegations of forcibly overthrowing the government, declaring that UNM would act within the constitutional framework and so reach parliamentary elections due in the fall of 2016.

“The National Movement has always been declaring that they would physically resist Rustavi 2 takeover,” he said, adding that in conversation with Saakashvili they’d been discussing all the possible means they could use to protect the TV station.

At the same time, amid wide popular confusion over the leaked audio recordings, Nika Gvaramia, Rustavi 2 director, retracted from his previous statement to mobilize TV supporters for a rally and announced its cancelation.

Rustavi 2 would defend itself by its own means against law enforcers, which are likely to ‘unlawfully break into’ the office and to implement the court ruling over the litigation with the TV channel’s previous owner, Gvaramia said during a briefing at Rustavi 2 on Friday.

Meanwhile the trial over Rustavi 2 ownership dispute was again postponed on Friday. It will resume on Monday morning.


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