Marc Behrendt: If freedom of expression allows someone to insult me, then it also allows me to say how insulted I am

Marc Behrendt, Director for Europe and Eurasia programs at Freedom House, has assessed the reaction of the Georgian and Russian authorities and the Georgian media environment after Giorgi Gabunia's monologue in his interview with the Georgian Service of Voice of Georgia.

According to him, the freedom of expression is quite difficult.

"If freedom of expression allows Gabunia to make such an unprofessional comment, it also allows politicians or the public to have a reaction, even too strict. If freedom of expression allows someone to insult me, even in very severe forms, then it also allows me to say how insulted I am.

I do not think that the authorities abused their right to express their opinion”, Marc Behrendt said, adding that he could not see signs of attempts by the government to restrict the freedom of expression.

As for Rustavi 2's reaction, according to Marc Behrendt, they made an appropriate and correct decision.

“The media outlet (as well as the large journalistic community) must implement professional and ethical standards, not the state," said Mark Behrendt.