Georgia Blocks Access to Pro-Islamic State Websites
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 24 Nov.'15 / 20:39

Access to at least two Georgian-language pro-Islamic State group websites was blocked in Georgia on Tuesday.

The State Security Service, which said last week that it was investigating those websites, did not immediately respond a request for comment.

But a senior Interior Ministry official confirmed that access to those websites was blocked by the authorities.

Access to the two websites, one of them using WordPress platform, appeared to be blocked in Georgia, but remained accessible from outside the country. The two websites were launched in spring, 2015.

One of those websites, describing itself as “Caliphate’s Georgian Information Channel”, carried a Georgian-language propaganda video, circulated on November 23 on pro-Islamic State group’s social media accounts.

The video showed Georgian-speaking men calling on Muslims in Georgia to join the “caliphate”, slamming Muslim clerics in Adjara and threatening to behead “infidels” in Georgia.

Deputy Interior Minister, Archil Talakvadze, told the Georgian public broadcaster on November 24 that the video apparently aimed at “causing panic” and it was less likely that it was indicating on an intention to carry out any specific action in Georgia.
 
Deputy Head of the Georgian State Security Service, Levan Izoria, said on November 16 that the security agency was “investigating” several Georgian-language pro-IS group websites and was intending to appeal the court with a request to block them. He said that the security agency did not take any measures against the websites earlier because it was gathering relevant information and evidence to build the case.
 
“We now have enough ground to launch prosecution of certain individuals,” he said in an interview with Tbilisi-based Maestro TV on November 16, but declined to elaborate details.

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