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Georgian Public Broadcaster ‘Unable’ To Grant Patriarchate Air Time

Georgian Patriarch Ilia II

Georgian Patriarch Ilia II

In the wake of last week's scandal surrounding the internet footage showing Patriarch Ilia II, the head of the Georgian Orthodox Church, apparently denigrating Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, Ilia's press secretary Mikael Botkoveli has addressed a formal request to the Georgian Public Broadcaster to air a debate on the issue.

But Levan Gakheladze, who is chairman of the channel's Board of Trustees, said on October 28 that due to ongoing renovation and construction work it is not currently "technically possible" to do so. National-Christian Movement leader Giorgi Andriadze condemned that refusal in a statement later on October 28, Caucasus Press reported. Andriadze said he is convinced that Saakashvili personally was behind the refusal to grant the Church's request.

About This Blog

This blog presents analyst Liz Fuller's personal take on events in the region, following on from her work in the "RFE/RL Caucasus Report." It also aims, to borrow a metaphor from Tom de Waal, to act as a smoke detector, focusing attention on potential conflict situations and crises throughout the region. The views are the author's own and do not represent those of RFE/RL.