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Official Beat Journalist

18.05.2009

Irakli Managadze

Zviad Khujadze , News Editor of Radio Channel Old City, blames  Gizo Tavadze, the Head of Culture Department of Kutaisi City Hall on beating him. In the interview to Human Rights Center, the journalist said that Tavadze had slapped him in the face.

The incident happened in a forest in Tskaltubo. Gizo Tavadze visited the journalist at his office and asked him to accompany him in order to have a talk with him.

Zviad Khujadze said: It’s natural I asked him what he wanted as I sat in the car and he told me that he had an affair with me. He intended to go to the country so I asked him to stop the car and have a talk there. Gizo Tavadze refused for the reason he was recognized by everyone in the city as he wanted to speak to him in a quiet place. I warned him several times not to leave the city and not to do any silly thing, however he was going on his way towards Tskaltubo. According to Khujadze, while driving Tavadze told him that he heard Khujadze was speaking behind his back and if he had some complaints he should discuss them with him. “I tried to explain that he should not be surprised if people talk about him as he was an official. “I added that I did not like the current situation in Culture Department and did not like him as a poet. I asked him to stop the car or go back to the city permanently. Suddenly he reversed the car towards the forest. Afterwards I decided to make a call for Patrol Police but he stopped the car calling me a coward and slapped me in the face,” said Zviad Khujadze. As Khujadze said, Tavadze hit on his hand strongly to make his mobile phone fall at seeing he had made a call for Patrol Police. Khujadze called him for waiting and explaining his behavior to the patrol officers, but he left him alone and went away.

The patrol officers took Zviad Khujadze to Tskaltubo Distict Police Station and he made a testimony there about the incident. A suit was brought about beating the journalist in Tskaltubo Police Station.

Gizo Tavadze denies the accusation considering it to be false. He has been on the position of the Head of Culture Department of Kutaisi City Hall since 2007. We should note that Zviad Khujadze held this post in 2005.

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