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New pro-Russian Media and Actors Related to Phartskhaladze

In this material, we will provide information about an organization that commenced broadcasting a year ago. We will share details about the organization's representatives, their connections with Russia and Russian high-ranking officials, and how this new media outlet began disseminating Russian propaganda in Georgia along with its goals.

The organization "Solidarity for Peace" was established in 2021 by two individuals associated with Otar Fartskhaladze as a non-governmental organization.

According to the organization's charter, "Solidarity for Peace" is a public association with a non-political project based on the principles of democracy, justice, and humanism, regardless of nationality, citizenship, or religious opinion. The organization also states that it considers voluntary donations in the form of cash or any movable or immovable property as a means of raising funds.

One of its members is Fartskhaladze's son, Anzor Andria Fartskhaladze, who has also been sanctioned by the United States of America. Shortly after its establishment, the organization "Solidarity for Peace" conducted a social survey to determine citizens' opinions regarding the restoration of direct flights with Russia, visa-free travel, and the initiation of direct negotiations. According to the organization, they surveyed up to 10,000 people, with more than 70% of them agreeing with the positive resolution of the mentioned issues.

In 2022, the organization began broadcasting, featuring two programs on television, its Facebook page, and its own YouTube channel. We observed the content of the programs, the guests invited, and the messages conveyed by the media associated with Fartskhaladze.

Research Methodology

The organization "Solidarity for Peace" currently hosts two programs: "Solidarity Time with Davit Akhvlediani" and "New Paradigm with Merab Chikashvili." These programs are aired every working day at 19:00.

We have watched eight shows that have aired in the last four months, selecting two shows per month. The same individuals are consistently invited as guests, including members of the "Solidarity for Peace" organization and members and experts from several other related organizations. We chose the programs for observation to gain insights into the opinions of different guests.

Using the MediaSpeech tool, we decoded the broadcasts, resulting in a total of 200 pages of decoded material.

We found that the organization "Solidarity for Peace" maintains two Facebook pages.

With the assistance of CrowdTangle, we conducted a study on both pages and their associated groups, as well as an examination of the admins of these pages and the profiles associated with the groups.

We discovered that members of "Solidarity for Peace" and active guests of the programs participated in the Russian-Georgian forum held in Moscow. One of the organizers of the forum was Roman Bokeria, the director of Otar Fartskhaladze's Russian companies.

In 2022, the organization started broadcasting on the pro-Russian "Lens" frequency. Merab Chikashvili, the director of the organization and the presenter of the program, was in the past years - first the TV presenter of the lens, and then the candidate for the majority of the pro-Russian party "Patriots Alliance" of the owner of this television, Irma Inashvili. Later, the organization "Solidarity for Peace" started broadcasting programs on TV-4 TV-Radio Company of Kvemo Kartli. It should be noted that this television is a pro-government media outlet, according to the Journalistic Ethics Charter television monitoring research.

The organization has two official pages: one as a political page, the other as an NGO page. The page of the non-governmental organization on Facebook is authorized to sponsor political advertising, from September 18, 2022 to May 31, 2023, a total of 93 posts have been sponsored. "Solidarity for Peace" also had a third page with 46 sponsored posts, but today the page has been canceled.

Both pages of "Solidarity for Peace" were created a few years ago with completely different names and purposes, and since then the names have been changed several times. One page was originally called "We like Sergeenko's work" (Davit Sergeenko was the Minister of IDPs, Labor, Health and Social Protection from the occupied territories in 2012-2019, Advisor to the Prime Minister in 2019-2020, and Member of Parliament in 2020-2023 from "Georgian Dream"). In 2013, the name of the second page was "" and then - "Kmaktsvili".

In the course of our research, we uncovered approximately 20 groups where "Solidarity for Peace" material was shared. Our observation revealed that among these groups, four are directly associated with the organization, sharing the same administrators. These groups include Solidarity for Peace, NEWS Georgia & World, for Georgia, and Georgia First. The administrators in these groups are identical.

A segment of these groups exhibits inauthentic behavior. For instance, the group for Georgia was initially created on May 21, 2022, and was named employment-vacancies. The group changed its name approximately 5 months later.

The group "NEWS Georgia & World" is particularly intriguing. This group was created in 2018 and was initially named Political Process. In 2020, the name was changed to "Welcome to Georgia." In the same year, it underwent several name changes such as Georgia, elections 2020, political process including 2021, and from March 29, 2022, the name was altered to "News Georgia."

The group "Georgia First" also has a history of name changes. The group was initially founded in 2018, and the name was altered on October 9, 2022. It is intriguing that the old name of the group is not easily searchable.

During the research process, we uncovered a very interesting fact: the content of the organization "Solidarity for Peace" was also shared in the Facebook groups of the anti-liberal, pro-Russian party "Conservative Movement."

In addition, representatives of the mentioned organizations visited each other's programs. It is also worth noting that Davit Akhvlediani, the host of the "Solidarity for Peace" program, worked at Alt Info last year and served as the host.

Our research indicates that the main messages of "Solidarity for Peace" include:

  • Anti-American stance: "America is fighting Russia in Ukraine and everywhere to destroy this country."

  • Criticism of the EU: "The EU is managed by America," "Georgia does not need EU membership," "America forbids the Georgian government to cooperate with Russia."

  • Assertion on territorial integrity: "Georgia's territorial integrity will be restored after the settlement of relations with Russia," "the collapse of the Soviet Union was the death of Georgia."

It can be concluded that "Solidarity for Peace" serves as a new media outlet disseminating Russian propaganda and conveying anti-American and anti-European messages. According to the organization's vision, Georgia should be a militarily neutral country, and the presenters and speakers in the programs emphasize the necessity of Georgia's cooperation with Russia. Not only has research revealed this, but also information about the pages of this media outlet has not been published so far.



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