Rustavi 2 TV Resumes Broadcasting

Rustavi 2 TV has resumed broadcasting. The channel currently continues functioning in the usual regime. It was off-air for several hours.

Rustavi 2, Tbilisi-based, private broadcasting company announced the suspension of programming late last night. The relevant decision was made by the General Director of the channel, Nika Gvaramia.

According to his statement, the channel would remain off-air until the safety of the media and personnel of the TV company was ensured.

A new wave of the demonstrations sparked in Georgia's capital Tbilisi after Rustavi 2 anchor Giorgi Gabunia insulted Russian President Vladimir Putin during the live broadcast. The monologue, very offensive to Putin in its form and context, was read in Russian by Gabunia.

A group of civilians gathered around Rustavi 2 TV building around 11 PM on a Sunday night. The protest ended at 4 AM on a Monday morning. The participants of the protest had 2 demands against the channel of Rustavi 2: launching an investigation about Gabunia’s swearing and the resignation of Giorgi Gabunia and Nika Gvaramia. Part of the protestors also demanded the closure of the TV company. 

Gabunia’s statement comes amid street rallies in Georgia, which were sparked by the visit of three Russian MPs to Georgia within the framework of a session of the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy held at the Parliament building on June 20, which was followed by severe protests by the public and opposition MPs, especially due to the fact that Russian MP Sergei Gavrilov sat in the parliamentary Speaker’s chair, speaking in Russian.

By Ana Dumbadze 

08 July 2019 10:14