03 May 2022
Koka Katsitadze, Head of the Special Investigation Service, met with representatives of the Media Advocacy Coalition
The Head of the Special Investigation Service introduced the specific directions and challenges of the Service to the participants of the meeting. During the introductory meeting institutional and functional independence of the investigative body was highlighted. More concretely, the expansion of the investigative jurisdiction was discussed, upon which, from March 1, 2022, the investigative subordination of the Service, in addition to the crimes committed by the representatives of the law enforcement bodies, has been increased by 12 Article related to unlawful interference with private life, unlawful interference with the journalist’s professional activities, persecution and encroachment upon freedom of speech.
Natia Kapanadze, Coordinator of the Media Advocacy Coalition, Mariam Gogosashvili, Executive Director of the Georgian Charter of Journalistic Ethics, and Giorgi Davituri, Head of Media direction of IDFI, attended the meeting held at the Special Investigation Service.
The participants of the meeting expressed their readiness for future cooperation with the Special Investigation Service and agreed that statistical data will be shared periodically between the Service and the Coalition.
"We met with the representatives of the Media Advocacy Coalition, to whom we introduced the challenges, which are currently faced by the Special Investigation Service. We also agreed on future cooperation on matters related to effective and prompt investigation of the facts of unlawful interference with the journalist’s professional activities,"- noted the Head of the Special Investigation Service Koka Katsitadze.
"The interest of the Media Advocacy Coalition is to reduce the crimes committed against journalists, as well as to reduce the issues that journalists have identified as a problem in their work process so far. We think that it is important for the state to take steps, in which case the response of the Special Investigation Service will probably be crucial. Clearly, on the one hand it is the detection of crimes and then the restoration of justice through an rapid and effective investigation. In this case, the role of the Service will be crucial. We, the member organizations of the Coalition, are ready to provide information to the Service on a regular basis about possible crimes, ” - said Natia Kapanadze, Coordinator of the Media Advocacy Coalition.
Protecting the rights of journalists and their professional activities is one of the main priorities of the Special Investigation Service.