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RFE/RL's Georgian Service recognized

RFE/RL's Georgian Service has been recognised by two of Georgia's most prominent non-governmental organizations, the Civil Society Institute, and the Georgian Young Lawyers Association.

The Civil Society Institute, at its 2nd annual "Let's Care for Each Other" award ceremony held in Tbilisi on December 26, 2008, honored RFE/RL journalists Jimsher Rekhviashvili and Goga Aptsiauri with first prize in the category of "Best Radio Report." Another RFE/RL journalist, Eka Kevanishvili, was recognized at the ceremony with a special diploma for her reporting on social issues from the conflict zone during the Russia-Georgia war in August, specifically on the plight of the tens of thousands of refugees fleeing the fighting.

In addition, the Georgian Young Lawyers Association, with support from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), has presented RFE/RL's Georgian Service with it's annual award for "Promoting Dissemination of Unbiased Information."

"We are honored to be recognized for our objective and unbiased coverage of events in Georgia, especially on the topic of the war with Russia," said RFE/RL Georgian Service Director David Kakabadze. "The August conflict between Georgia and Russia was harrowing, not least due to a lack of credible, on-the-scene reporting. Our journalists did their utmost to provide Georgians, Russians, Ossettians and indeed the entire world with reliable news from the ground, often at great personal risk."

Established in 1995, the Civil Society Institute is a leading public policy and governance think tank and grant-maker in Georgia funded through donations from the European Commission, the United States Embassy in Georgia, the United Nations Refugee Agency, as well as a number of private organizations. The "Lets Care for Each Other" awards recognize journalistic excellence in the fields of Best Radio Report, Best Television Report, Best Print Article, and Best Photo Report.

The Georgian Young Lawyers Association is a professional, membership-based organization claiming over 600 members. Founded in 1994 as a union of legal professionals, the organization aims to bolster the rule of law in Georgia through lobbying efforts, transparency initiatives, and free legal services for Georgian citizens.

RFE/RL's Georgian Service began broadcasting in March 1953 as part of Radio Liberty broadcasting to the Soviet Union. Over the years, it has established a tradition for high professional standards for its news reporting and is widely regarded as the only objective and unbiased source of information in Georgia.