President Saakashvili has imposed a state of emergency throughout the country for 15 days, Economy Minister Giorgi Arveladze announced at 1 am local time on November 8.
Restrictions, he said, would be imposed on the dissemination of information, demonstrations and strikes.
The measures mean that news programs on all private television stations will be cancelled for 15 days. The publicly-funded Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB) will be the only station allowed to provide news coverage.
The presidential decree implies, Arveladze said, “a freeze on the gathering and free dissemination of information in written or verbal forms.”
“This only covers TV and radio stations,” Arveladze specified. “The gathering and dissemination of information will only be conducted by the Georgian Public Broadcaster.”
Newspapers and online media sources are exempt from the measure.
Parliament must be convened within the next 48 hours to approve the presidential decree. In the meantime, it remains in force.