Senior MEP: Rustavi 2 Decision ‘Could Endanger’ Media Pluralism

MEP Rebecca Harms said in a statement on March 6 that she is “deeply concerned” by the Supreme Court’s March 2 decision over Rustavi 2 TV, saying that it “could endanger the fragile balance of media pluralism in Georgia.”

Rebecca Harms, who chairs the 60-member European Parliament Delegation to the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly,  stated that she “welcomes” the European Court of Human Rights instruction to temporarily suspend the enforcement of the Supreme Court’s ruling and “appreciates” the decision of the Georgian Government to respect the suspension order.

“Pluralism and freedom of the press are essential for democracy, Georgia’s democratic reform process and its pro-European aspiration,” she said.

In order to guarantee media pluralism and media independency, Harms noted, “it is crucial to achieve full transparency of media ownership and financing.”

“Media and press should not be controlled by the Government or those close to it. Opposition voices must continue to be heard on Georgian broadcast media,” she added.

The Euronest Parliamentary Assembly, a parliamentary forum to promote political association and further economic integration between the European Union and the Eastern European Partners, gathers 110 lawmakers from the European Parliament and the Eastern Partnership countries.
The Euronest Parliamentary Assembly has 60 Members of the European Parliament (who also make up the current European Parliament Delegation) and 10 members from each of the following Eastern Partnership countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.

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