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The Daily Beat: 18 June

Georgia lost 1-3 to Turkey in a dramatic match in Dortmund, Germany on June 18. The national team still has two more tries to go before the playoffs, with Group F matches against Czechia on June 22 and Portugal on June 26. A first or second-place finish in the group will guarantee a place in the playoffs. “the Euros’ best night fit the weather somehow: a wild, wonderful, wide-open match that had everything: 38 shots, three efforts that hit the woodwork and four goals,” wrote Sid Lowe, football correspondent for the Guardian.

In an interview with Russia’s newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Galuzin said that Georgian authorities have “learned a lesson” from the 2008 Russia-Georgia war, or what he called a “criminal adventure.” In an interview, Galuzin also noted that at present the Georgian authorities “aim at the peaceful return” of Abkhazia and South Ossetia,” further urging Tbilisi to recognize the “independence” of the Russian-occupied regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali.

Opposition-leaning Mtavari Arkhi TV reported that journalist and TV anchor Tiko Peikrishvili left the government mouthpiece Imedi TV channel, citing the online media source Mediachecker. A day earlier, another journalist, Tamar Sharikadze, announced her resignation from Imedi TV after five years working for the broadcaster, accusing her supervisor of tasking her to prepare media content that would encourage violence.

The Central Election Commission (CEC) denied accusations voiced in a TV report of the opposition-leaning Mtavari Arkhi TV on the upcoming parliamentary elections, alleging possible manipulation at the October parliamentary elections, with a particular focus on the introduction of electronic voting. The CEC accused Mtavari Arkhi TV of “another attempt to discredit the electronic elections and the election administration.”

Transparency International Georgia published a detailed review of the commercial revenues of Georgian TV and radio broadcasters in 2023. According to the report, overall revenues increased by 18.8% compared to 2022, reaching GEL 95 million, mainly due to an increase in commercial revenues of pro-government TV channels. The organization analyzes the situation in the media advertising market and concludes that it is not conducive to the proper functioning of the media.

Water supply to more than 100,000 residents of Tbilisi and Mtskheta was cut off on June 16, amid unusually scorching heat for June, due to the accidental damage to the main water pipeline near Tsitsamuri village, Saguramo settlement, the main part of the Tbilisi water supply system through which drinking water is supplied to Tbilisi. Due to the disruption, as of June 18, about 65 thousand residents of Tbilisi are receiving water for only 2-4 hours a day in 35-degree Celsius weather.


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