rules for secret surveillance

Georgian president vetoes controversial surveillance bill

By | March 20th, 2017|Categories: Politics|Tags: , , |

(DF Watch) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili on Monday vetoed a surveillance bill which civil society groups claim does not go far enough in reining in the powers of the secret police. Also opposition parties have criticized the bill. They suspect that it will give […]

Campaigners in Georgia urge president to veto surveillance bill

By | March 11th, 2017|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , |

(DF Watch) TBILISI, DFWatch–An activist group in the former Soviet republic of Georgia urges the president to veto a secret surveillance bill and plans to sue the government in the European Court of Human Rights over the bill. The bill on secret surveillance was adopted […]

Constitutional Court deprives security service of surveillance access keys

By | April 15th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Constitutional Court ruled Thursday to take the access keys to secret surveillance away from the State Security Service, which until now has had the technical means to access data that may identify people. Lika Sajaia, parliamentary […]

Demand for tougher regulation of surveillance following sex tapes scandal

By | April 5th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Organizations that are members of the campaign This Affects You Too on Monday called on the government to take measures to rein in the use of secret surveillance and wiretapping. The groups also demand the resignation of Chief Prosecutor […]

NGOs demand tougher measures to stop surveillance videos

By | March 15th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

(DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–NGOs in Georgia demand the creation of an investigative tool to combat the spreading of videos depicting people’s intimate lives and they want international experts to be involved in this. The initiative comes from organizations which are part […]

Georgian president promises to defeat ‘dark forces’ behind sex tapes

By | March 14th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili on Monday promised that the ‘dark forces’ attempting to blackmail free society will be defeated and fittingly punished. “I guarantee that the fight against those criminals will be won,” he said at a briefing […]

Georgia sex tape scandal not over, new video posted Monday

By | March 14th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Lasha Berulava. TBILISI, DFWatch–Strangers Monday posted one more video online showing sex scenes involving a public person. The Youtube video was accompanied by a warning that more videos will be posted soon. Youtube was cut off for some time for Georgian users. […]

Ex-prosecutor reveals systematic sex surveillance and blackmail

By | March 14th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Maia Mtsariashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A former Tbilisi prosecutor claims that the military inspection at the Defense Ministry used to collect videos depicting intimate situations of gay men during Saakashvili’s presidency, to use for blackmail. Maia Mtsariashvili, a former prosecutor, […]

Harsh punishment for spreading secretly recorded sex video: Georgian PM

By | March 12th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: |

Giorgi Kvirikashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili on Saturday warned people who uploaded a sex video of an opposition politician to the Internet that they will be harshly punished. In a statement issued on Saturday the PM explains that this will be an example […]

Compromising video of opposition politician posted on Youtube

By | March 11th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A video depicting the sex life of a politician from the opposition was Friday posted on Youtube and privately sent to several Georgian journalists by e-mail. Some of the media outlets disclosed the name of the person in the video, but later apologized. […]

Interior Ministry answers critics about hidden cameras in police cars

By | February 10th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Interior Ministry on Wednesday explained a proposal to place video cameras in unmarked police cars, which was criticized the day before. “Recently, the media have purposely replicated the opinions of the so-called […]

Should unmarked police cars be equipped with video cameras?

By | February 10th, 2016|Categories: News|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A proposal to put cameras in unmarked police cars and use video recordings to fine drivers for traffic violations is met with suspicion in Georgia. According to the bill, police will be entitled to install secret video cameras in unmarked patrol […]

Activist group appeals against surveillance legislation in Constitutional Court

By | April 9th, 2015|Categories: NGO news|Tags: |

(DF Watch) Tbilisi, DFWatch–NGOs in Georgia have revived their campaign This Affects You Too, and are launching a lawsuit against the Ministry of Internal Affairs for having direct access to communication operators’ networks and, thus, having ability to eavesdrop on citizens unchecked. […]

Tbilisi NGOs vow to defend president’s veto

By | December 3rd, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A group of NGOs based in Tbilisi warn that they are going on the offensive against the country’s parliament, which recently overturned a veto by President Margvelashvili against giving the Interior Ministry control over the means to conduct secret surveillance. […]

Parliament overturns president’s veto, approves surveillance bill

By | December 1st, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

The Ministry of Internal Affairs. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament on Sunday overturned the president’s veto and approved the a surveillance bill which gives the Interior Ministry direct access to communication operators’ networks and to eavesdrop on citizens. 82 MPs voted in favor […]

Georgian president vetoes surveillance bill, again

By | November 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president has vetoed a surveillance bill which would have given the Interior Ministry control over access keys to eavesdropping on the communication of citizens. President Giorgi Margvelashvili’s veto on Saturday is the second time […]

Georgia’s surveillance bill passed, now up to president

By | November 28th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament on Friday finally passed a law about secret surveillance that grants the Interior Ministry direct access to secret surveillance material with 73 votes in favor and 30 against. The ‘keys issue’, as it has come to be known […]

Georgian parliament lets Interior Ministry have access to surveillance

By | November 28th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s national assembly on Thursday decided to leave access keys to secretly obtained surveillance material in the hands of the Interior Ministry. After days of confrontation with a diversity of opinions about the draft bill, 75 MPs voted […]

Georgian parliament makes new attempt to agree on surveillance reform

By | November 24th, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia has still not decided who should have access to secret surveillance material, a problem that has remained unresolved for more than half a year. But this week, parliament is to review several legislative proposals. A previous vote that […]

Georgian parliament accepts president’s veto

By | October 31st, 2014|Categories: In brief|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament grudgingly abandoned its plan to overturn the president’s veto against a decision to postpone legislation that would quickly curb the Interior Ministry’s ability to carry out secret surveillance. Georgia has introduced […]

Georgian president vetoes postponement of surveillance reform

By | October 31st, 2014|Categories: Politics|Tags: , |

President Giorgi Margvelashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–President Giorgi Margvelashvili Friday vetoed a decision by the Georgian parliament to postpone a decision about reining in the use secret surveillance by the state. The veto is a highly confrontational move that could be a precursor of a major rift […]

Georgian parliament postpones decision on secret surveillance

By | October 29th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: |

Interior Minister Alexandre Chikaidze destroying the ‘dirty archive’ in February, 2014. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The question of who should hold the access keys to the ‘black boxes’ containing secret surveillance material in Georgia has been postponed six more months. As other former Soviet countries, Georgia has experienced widespread use of phone tapping […]

Georgia introduces stricter regulation of secret surveillance

By | August 5th, 2014|Categories: NGO news|Tags: |

(Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian parliament last week approved an amendment which will bring in stricter rules for the use of secret surveillance by the state. According to the changes, the state may use secret surveillance in cases when it is a necessary, appropriate […]

Campaign wants mobile operators to oversee surveillance

By | May 20th, 2014|Categories: NGO news|Tags: |

Campaigners object to parliament postponing the ‘secret key’ issue. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The ‘This Affects You Too’ campaign demands that parliament appoints a special session to review a package of amendments to better regulate secret surveillance and considers it ‘shameful’ that the assembly failed to reach a quorum last […]

Surveillance bill review postponed

By | May 17th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Secret surveillance is to be regulated better in Georgia with a new legislative package. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Parliament in Georgia Friday postponed the review of a much-debated bill proposed by civil rights groups aimed at preventing illegal surveillance, a practice still rife in the country. The review was postponed because parliament was unable to reach a quorum. […]

Rustavi 2 under investigation for illegal wiretapping

By | May 13th, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Head of Rustavi 2, Nika Gvaramia. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office in Georgia has launched an investigation into surveillance recordings published by Rustavi 2. The case is based on suspicion that the recordings were illegally obtained and published, which if true means that the TV company […]

Rustavi 2 director claims police is watching him

By | May 7th, 2014|Categories: Media, News|Tags: , , |

Head of Rustavi 2 TV Nika Gvaramia claims he is under surveillance. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A Georgian TV company accuses the government of wiretapping and spying on its management and journalists. The accusations were put forth on Tuesday by Nika Gvaramia, director of Rustavi 2, the last major TV channel that remains faithful to former […]

Georgian PM claims campaigners undermining government

By | May 3rd, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili claims a campaign to reign in illegal surveillance is an attempt to undermine the government. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili says demands by influential NGOs to refine legislation to prevent illegal wiretapping is an attack against the government. After the Saakashvili regime lost power in Georgia, several Tbilisi-based […]

NGOs claim gov’t delaying anti-surveillance bill till after election

By | April 29th, 2014|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , |

The campaign ‘This Affects You Too’ suspects that the government wants to delay a law to protect against illegal surveillance. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Campaigners fighting to stop secret surveillance in Georgia are asking parliament to pass amendments to prohibit secret phone surveillance before the local election on June 15. Non-governmental organizations in the ‘This Affects You Too’ campaign […]

Curbing of illegal surveillance delayed, campaigners say

By | April 8th, 2014|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , |

Kakha Kojoridze from Georgian Young Lawyer’s Association, one of the groups in the campaign. (Promotion video.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Campaigners in Georgia suspect law enforcement agencies are intentionally prolonging a legislative hearing about illegal wiretapping. The campaign ‘This Affects You Too’, which includes several of the most influential NGOs in Tbilisi, was started […]

Georgians switching off phones one hour to protest wiretapping

By | March 20th, 2014|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , , |

Eka Gigauri. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–In Georgia, campaigners are asking people to switch off their mobile phones for one hour on Friday to protest illegal wiretapping. The campaign ‘This Affects You Too – They Still Listen to Us’ envisages turning off mobile phones every Friday […]

Campaign asks people to turn off mobile phones in protest

By | March 11th, 2014|Categories: NGO news|Tags: , |

Nino Lomjaria, head of International Society For Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED). (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Several Georgian NGOs that are involved in the campaign ‘This Affects You Too-They Still Listen to Us’ call on citizens to turn off their mobile phones for two hours and protest against the government’s illegal wiretapping. Nino Lomjaria, head […]

Georgia increases punishment for illegal surveillance

By | February 14th, 2014|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

Interior Minister Alexandre Chikaidze. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia wants to increase the punishment for engaging in illegal surveillance to seven years in jail. Presenting the draft bill on Thursday, Interior Minister Alexandre Chikaidze said that in past years, human rights were violated […]

Georgia’s Interior Ministry destroys surveillance material

By | January 31st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Minister of Internal Affairs Alexandre Chikaidze personally ensuring the DVDs are destroyed Friday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–45 DVDs and two hard drives were destroyed at the Interior Ministry on Friday, which included footage obtained through illegal surveillance. Alexandre Chikaidze, Minister of Internal Affairs, said that the commission tasked with studying the illegally […]

Georgia to keep archive obtained by illegal political surveillance

By | January 31st, 2014|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Lasha Tughushi, one of the members of the commission, says the interior ministry has kept about 28 000 files, or 789 hours, of a surveillance archive, mostly of a political content. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s Interior Ministry still stocks about 28 000 computer files with recordings that were part of a system of political surveillance obtained through illegal means. Only a few of the files will be destroyed – those which contain material of an intimate nature. […]

Georgia destroys 110 DVDs with illegal surveillance videos

By | September 6th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Interior Minister Irakli Gharibashvili feeding a surveillance DVD into a shredding maching Thursday. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The interior minister in Georgia Thursday destroyed 110 DVDs containing highly sensitive footage illegally acquired by the domestic intelligence during President Saakashvili’s government. The DVDs contained 144 files, totaling 181 hours, and were fed […]

Georgia’s dirty archive to be destroyed on September 5

By | September 3rd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

The Interior Ministry’s “Moduli” building in Saburtalo, Tbilisi. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–A date has been set for destroying the Soviet-style ‘dirty archive’ accumulated by the secret police during the Saakashvili regime: September 5 at 15:00. Some of the archive consists of videos from hidden cameras pointing into the bedroom of […]

Destruction of Georgia’s ‘dirty archive’ delayed again

By | August 16th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Minister of Internal Affairs, Irakli Gharibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s interior minister says the dirty Soviet-style archive of compromising surveillance videos illegally amassed by the Saakashvili regime will be destroyed in the ‘next few days’, but the date remains unknown. Interior Minister Irakli […]

Dirty archive to be destroyed in two weeks

By | August 1st, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Lasha Tugshushi, commission member says the part of archive will be destroyed by August 15 (IPN) TBilisi, DFWatch – Authorities in Georgia have set a time frame of two weeks for destroying part of an archive containing illegally obtained surveillance footage during the previous government. Lasha Tughushi, who is member of a commission to monitor […]

Georgia to offer amnesty for illegal surveillance material

By | June 14th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Eka Beselia, head of the parliamentary committee on human rights. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The government in Georgia is proposing an amnesty for people who are in the possession of illegally obtained footage of someone’s private life and are willing to hand it over to the Interior Ministry. A bill has been drafted and will soon […]

Destruction of dirty archive delayed

By | June 7th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch–Several organizations in Georgia criticize the Interior Ministry for delaying the destruction of an archive of compromising videos filmed with a hidden camera. The publication of videos in April and May showing several well-known persons engaging […]

Georgia to scrap Soviet style archive of compromising secrets

By | June 3rd, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Georgia’s Minister of Internal Affairs Irakli Gharibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian interior minister says that an archive of secret recordings of people’s private lives will be destroyed next week. Minister of Internal Affairs Irakli Gharibashvili said this during a public meeting at the Center of European Politics […]

Lawmakers discussed how to destroy ‘dirty archive’

By | May 20th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Deputy Chief Prosecutor Shota Rekhviashvili said the Prosecutor’s Office in 2012 asked the court 1 063 times for permission to conduct phone surveillance and as far as he remembers, in all cases the request was granted. (Ministry of Justice.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Ministry of Internal Affairs plans to partially destroy illegally recorded secret surveillance material in one week. Deputy Interior Minister Levan Izoria said on Monday that this process will be conducted with the participation of society. […]

Secret archive of abuse videos discovered

By | May 16th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Chief Prosecutor Archil Kbilashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Prosecutor’s Office and the Prison Ministry have discovered a secret archive of prison videos. At a meeting with journalists, Prison Minister Sozar Subari said that when the government came to power these kinds of archives were put away, but […]

Georgia to destroy its ‘dirty archive’ of personal secrets

By | May 13th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Interior Minister Irakli Gharibashvili. (Official photo.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The Ministry of Internal Affairs has agreed with the Prosecutor’s Office to immediately destroy a ‘dirty archive’ of compromising material created during President Saakashvili’s various governments. Interior Minister Irakli Gharibashvili said […]

Fear of surveillance must be eliminated, says Ivanishvili

By | April 30th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: |

Editor in Chief of Rezonansi Lasha Tughushi (left), Speaker of Parliament Davit Usupashvili and Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. (DFWatch photo.) TBILISI, DFWatch–The new government is not conducting illegal surveillance of citizens, but the fear people have of being tracked should be eliminated, Prime Minister Bidzina Ivansihvili said on Monday. Georgia’s National Platform of the Eastern Partnership, which […]

Interior minister found his own phone had been tapped

By | February 6th, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

Interior Minister Irakli Gharibashvili. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch — The Georgian interior minister says he has discovered audio files of all his phone calls for a whole year, secretly recorded and stored on computer disk. Irakli Gharibashvili was Tuesday invited to the TV channel Rustavi 2 to sum up the government’s […]

Telecom investor offers more details about eavesdropping

By | November 2nd, 2012|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch — The former owner of a telecommunication company accuses other companies of illegal eavesdropping. Mamia Sanadiradze, founder and former owner of Caucasus Online, said a few days ago that his company was subject to pressure. He said that the […]

Caucasus Online’s former owner tells of surveillance

By | October 31st, 2012|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch — The former owner of a telecommunication company claims that the company was under serious pressure, because he refused to install listening devices. Caucasus Online is one of the biggest telecommunication companies in Georgia. Its former owner, […]

Ruling expands the right to privacy

By | October 25th, 2012|Categories: NGO news|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch — A lawyers group’s has won a lawsuit against the Georgian parliament. Georgian Young Lawyers Association (GYLA) protested the law about operative investigations, which gave power to observe and participate in open and closed internet […]

Political analyst suspects his apartment is bugged

By | June 14th, 2012|Categories: In brief, News|Tags: , |

TBILISI, DFWatch – An independent commentator in Georgia suspects there was installed surveillance equipment in his flat. Gia Khukhashvili yesterday told journalists his neighbor from upstairs discovered a listening device and informed him. “I haven’t seen it […]

Secret phone surveillance in Georgia – is it legal?

By | May 29th, 2012|Categories: News|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch – Georgia’s education minister on Monday fired the head the of National Examinations Center, which is know as a successfully reformed state body. The minister said the reason was differences over how to implement reforms. But there are suspecions […]

Eavesdropping without judicial oversight is no longer permitted

By | April 17th, 2012|Categories: Opinion|Tags: , |

On 28th of February 2012, the Constitutional Court of Georgia upheld the complaint of Georgian Young Lawyer’s Association and repealed article 8.2 of the Georgian law on “operative investigative activity.” Only if the investigative authority has obtained judicial […]