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Regional Newspapers Complain over Problems with Access to Public Information
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 3 May.'10 / 23:55

Several regional newspapers ran a blank front page on May 3, which marks the World Press Freedom Day, with a headline "Give us public information".

Over dozen of regional newspapers said in a joint statement that the move aimed at highlighting the problem their journalists were facing in obtaining information from the state structures under the freedom of information legislation, which is in force in Georgia since 2000.

In the statement, the newspapers call on the President and the Parliament "instead of facade transparency to secure real transparency of the state structure, instead of facade transparency."

Tbilisi-based legal advocacy group, Georgian Young Lawyers Association (GYLA), said in a statement on May 3 that cases of absolute ignorance of journalists by the state structures has increases recently." It also said that the Tbilisi Mayor's Office was "illegally refusing" to provide GYLA with requested public information.

It also said that local self-governance bodies in the provinces were following "a shameful practice" of creating obstacles to access to public information.

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