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GPB: ‘Paris Court Ruling Unfair’
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 14 Jul.'10 / 13:18

Studio of First Caucasian Channel. The Georgian Public Broadcaster says it will resume broadcasting of its Russian-language channel within next few months.

The Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB) said it was “disappointed” with a decision of the Paris court of commerce, which ruled against GPB’s lawsuit against Europe’s leading satellite operator, Eutelsat.

“[The broadcaster] thinks that the court's verdict is unfair and groundless,” the GPB said in a statement late on July 13 and added that it was now considering whether to appeal the verdict or not.

According to GPB, court costs, related to case against Eutelsat, was up to GEL 900,000 (about USD 490,000).

In its ruling on July 12, the Paris-based court rejected GPB’s motion demanding from Eutelsat to restore its Russian-language First Caucasian Channel back on W7 satellite operating at the 36 degrees East - a key location for broadcasting in Russia and other CIS states. GPB was also seeking reimbursement of financial damage caused by removal of the First Caucasian Channel from Eutelsat’s satellite.

The GPB also said in the statement that it “continues working on further development of the First Caucasian Channel.”

“The decision has been taken to restore the channel’s broadcasting within next few months,” GPB said without giving further details.

After its removal from the satellite in January, the First Caucasian Channel was only available for viewers in Tbilisi through cable networks and on internet. But in early June the channel suspended broadcasting - although still keeping presence on internet - pending the decision of the Paris court of commerce.

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