So amidst all the tragedy in North Ossetia, a Georgian film crew was captured by…the Russian Security Services? Surely not during the funerals of hundreds of Ossetian, slaughtered as they were by terrorist murderers? Yes, and the FSB are acting pretty strange about it too. Putin seems to be gunning for a showdown with Georgia and Chechnya.
This is pretty mad stuff. The Georgian President, Mikhail Saakashvili went on television to demand the return of the journalists. The two hacks work for the more independent station in Georgia, and the region, Rustavi-2, which is actually available in a live streamin on the Internet. The station has reporting on the situation here and here, and are blaming Russian political motives – which is all too likely given the recent skirmishes in South Ossetia. You can watch the latest news in Real Player if you click the Live link.
The Rustavi2 Broadcasting Company is highly concerned by the detention of its correspondent, Nana Lezhava and the cameraman, Levan Tetvadze by the Russian law-enforcers in Beslan.
The authorities of the company are strongly convinced that the detention of Nana Lezhava had nothing to do with the “active behavior” on her part as the Russian law-enforcers, and, unfortunately, some Russian media agencies call it.
The Rustavi2 authorities deem the detention of Nana Lezhava and Levan Tetvadze as an illegal act as both of the journalists had all the necessary legal documents which allowed them to cross the border to cover the events in Beslan.
Several members of the Rustavi2 staff have launched a protest demonstration in front of the Russian embassy in Tbilisi. They have already been joined by other media representatives who came to show sympathy for their colleagues unfairly detained in Beslan.
This appears to be yet more provocation by the Russians, even after the events in Beslan.