SECOND WORKING MEETING OF INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF JOURNALISTS “SOUTH CAUCASUS”
On December 21-23 in Yerevan the second working meeting devoted to the preparation and publication of “Media in South Caucasus in Post-Soviet Times” book will be held. Similarly to the first meeting, held in early October (see details in YPC Weekly Newsletter, September 28 – October 4, 2002), the event is organized by the International Association of Journalists “South Caucasus” in partnership with Yerevan Press Club with the support of OSCE Office in Yerevan and the financial assistance of German Government. The presentations of experts and journalists of South Caucasus countries made at these meetings will become the basis for the future book, the publication of which is scheduled for 2003.
The presentations of the December meeting participants will cover such topics as “Media Legislation and the Rights of Journalists in Armenia”, “Electronic Media Market in Georgia”, “New Media in Azerbaijan”, “Professional Education for Journalists in Georgia”, “Media in Unrecognized Republics: the Example of Mountainous Karabagh”. A general discussion on the role of media in regional integration and conflict resolution will also take place.
On December 23 the International Association of Journalists “South Caucasus” will meet to discuss organizational issues, related to the activities of this international NGO. The branches of the Association, established in December 2000 and registered in October this year in Strasbourg, operate in Yerevan, Baku, Tbilisi, Stepanakert, Sukhumi, Tskhinvali (see details in YPC Weekly Newsletter, November 2-8, 2002).
NATIONAL COMMISSION ON TELEVISION AND RADIO CHALLENGED THE DECISION OF THE COMMERCIAL COURT ON THE SUIT OF “NOYAN TAPAN”
On December 16 the National Commission on Television and Radio challenged with RA Court of Cassation the decision of the Commercial Court of December 2. By this decision, the suit of “Noyan Tapan” LLC versus the National Commission was secured and the latter one was obliged to accept the bid of “Noyan Tapan” to participate in the broadcast licensing competition (see YPC Weekly Newsletter, November 30 – December 6, 2002). As it has been reported, prior to this the Commercial Court decided the competition for five UHFs in Yerevan must be suspended till the end of the court proceedings (see YPC Weekly Newsletter, November 16-22, 2002).
Thus, the fears of journalistic community (particularly those of “A1+” TV company, a bidder in the competition) that this litigation will be intentionally prolonged, as the authorities are interested to freeze the competition before the elections. Meanwhile, the necessity of its quick conductance has been emphasized also by representatives of international organizations, including OSCE (see YPC Weekly Newsletter, December 7-13, 2002).
THE ARMENIAN PRESIDENT MET THE LEADERS OF REGIONAL PRINT MEDIA
On December 12 the RA President Robert Kocharian received the editors of 16 regional newspapers of the country. Held for the first time, the meeting was initiated by the editors of regional media and the Journalists Union of Armenia, its Chairwoman Astghik Gevorgian also participating in the meeting. The representatives of the regional press asked Robert Kocharian to assist the solution of a number of problems. In particular, the conversation centered around the improvement of technical facilities of the editorial offices, subsidization of non-state regional editions, enabling the media to privatize the premises currently occupied.
The editors of regional newspapers expressed a wish for the meetings with the President to become traditional.
ENTREPRENEUR HRANT VARDANIAN HAS BECOME THE OWNER OF THE CONTROLLING STOCK OF “AR” TV COMPANY
The well-known Armenian entrepreneur, President of “Grand Holding” company, comprising a number of major industrial enterprises, the owner of “Hayrenik TV” Hrant Vardanian has become the owner of the controlling stock of another TV company – “AR”. This was stated by “AR” President Meruzhan Ter-Ghulanian. According to him, currently preparatory work is done to fully restore “AR” broadcasts, renew the technical facilities of the TV. Structural and staff transformation of the company is also nearing completion. Thus, from now on the TV company will be headed by a financial director (not appointed yet) and a creative director (Meruzhan Ter-Ghulanian). The latter expressed hope that by the 7th anniversary since the foundation of “AR” (January 13, 2003) the newscast of the TV channel will be renewed.
“AYB-FEH” DAILY PUBLISHED
On December 17 the first issue of “Ayb-Feh” daily was published. The founder and the publisher of the newspaper is “Meltex” LLC, which is at the same time the founder of “A1+” TV company. The backbone of the new edition are the journalists of the homonymous news service of “A1+” TV company, which, as it is known, has been out of air for over 8 months already, having not received a broadcast license. “Ayb-Feh” is managed by an editorial board. The newspaper is published on 8/A3 pp., the print run being 2,000 copies.