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Georgia: Security Minister Resigns Amid Media Scandal

Tbilisi, 31 October 2001 (RFE/RL) -- Georgia's Security Minister Vakhtang Kutateladze today submitted his resignation, following a raid by security police on the country's main private television station. Yesterday, police spent two hours searching the studios of Rustavi-2 television, a frequent critic of the government's policies.

Police said they were checking for financial irregularities. But Rustavi-2 staff and liberal politicians say the raid was an attack on freedom of the press.

President Eduard Shevardnadze has ordered an inquiry into the incident, pledging to uphold press freedom in the country.

Georgian state television reported today that Shevardnadze has accepted Kutateladze's resignation.