Batumelebi gets blackmailing threats

Batumelebi Attempt of blackmailing of Batumelebi, independent weekly newspaper of Batumi, Ajara, famous for its investigative reports and quality journalism, caused a buzz among those who blog about media, Media Helping Media also reported about the threats.

Batumelebi says that on 25 November, Tedo Jorbenadze, the head of the newspaper’s investigative journalism unit, was summoned to the Interior Ministry to discuss some “personal matters.” According to the newspaper, Jorbenadze informed the director and editor-in-chief before going along for the meeting, but they were not allowed to accompany him. Jorbenadze says officials from Georgia’s Special Operations Department (SOD) showed him what appeared to be cropped black and white photographs of the journalist with some semi naked men. The newspaper claims Jorbenadze was told that the images would be released and circulated on the internet if he didn’t offer the authorities “assistance and cooperation.”