In the run-up to the October 2 elections, the Georgian television broadcaster Imedi refused to broadcast a political advertisement for the opposition party European Georgia on the grounds of alleged “hate speech”.

European Georgia won five out of 60 opposition seats in the Georgian parliament in the October 2020 elections.

The clip accuses government officials of corruption and calls on the public to notify the party for help if they know of corrupt deals.

Imedi refuses to broadcast political advertisements with hate speech before the elections, regardless of political party affiliation, “Imedi said in a statement.

The party’s leader, Giga Bokeria, said Imedi’s decision was “a gross violation of the law and has no basis in legislation”. the government.

Bokeria noted that this is not the first time Imedi television has refused to air one of its election ads.

They did that in the previous election campaign (parliamentary election 2020) and the Regulatory Commission decided that Imedi would break the law after the election campaign, ”said Bokeria.

The television station Imedi was founded by the late tycoon Badri Patarkatsishvili in the early 2000s and was raided by police in 2007 when his ownership of the station was stripped from him. Imedi was returned to the late tycoon’s family after the 2012 elections when the ruling Georgian Dream (GD) party replaced the United National Movement (UNM) party.

The TV company is now owned by the asset management company Hunnewell Partners, whose founding partner is Irakli Rukhadze, Chairman of the Imedi Supervisory Board.

According to a survey by the International Republican Institute (IRI), 32 percent of Georgians trust Imedi television.