Tbilisi International Book Festival In Response to Ukrainian Publishing and Literary Organizations
In response to an open letter “Stand With Ukraine”, issued by the leading Ukrainian literary organizations and on behalf of the Tbilisi International Book Festival, the largest publishing and literary event of the Georgian Publishers and Booksellers Association, we would like to inform you that our festival has never collaborated with Russian state organizations in order to organize a Russian national stand, as we never wanted our festival to become a source of Russian propaganda in Georgia.It has always been a matter of principle and dignity for us, as we are the citizens of an occupied country. 20% of our territories have been occupied by the brutal military operations of the violent Russian Empire twice in the last thirty years, and moreover, we are still victims of Russian creeping occupation. Thus, we only used to cooperate with specific, independent Russian publishing houses, that occasionally participated in the Tbilisi International Book Festival with individual stands.
However, in view of the dire situation in Ukraine today, in protest of the large-scale violence perpetrated by Russia throughout the land of our allies and friends, the team of the Tbilisi International Book Festival decided to completely terminate cooperation with the Russian publishers. We believe that in this harsh reality when the Ukrainian people are living under bombs and the peaceful future of the civilized world is costing Ukrainians their lives and the lives of their loved ones, it is impossible to separate culture and politics. We think that today, as never before, culture has a great duty and responsibility to raise its voice, to become an integral part of world politics, and, to the best of its ability, fight for the support of the Ukrainian people
Peace and victory to the glorious people of Ukraine!