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16 facts of breaches to press freedom identified in January by IMI

12.02.2019, 19:25
In January, the IMI experts revealed 16 incidents of breaches to press freedom (in January 2018 there were 13 incidents). Among them 13 incidents are physical assaults. The main violations were obstruction to practice journalism (7 cases) and restriction to access to public information (3 cases). Such are the results of IMI monthly survey “Freedom of press barometer”. The violations were observed in nine regions of Ukraine. Kyiv and the Kyiv region took leading position in this list (4 incidents), then there were revealed 2 incidents in each of the following regions: the region of Mykolaiv, Odessa, Kherson, Zakarpatie and Zaporizhzhya. The journalist’s right to fulfill his professional activity was violated by private persons, local authorities and a deputy, officials of judicial authorities and executive authorities. Some journalists faced obstruction from religious believers of Russian orthodox church 9as it happened in Chernivetska region where Galyna Eremits, journalist for “Chernivtsy.Online” was could not take pictures), in Vinnytsya the church guards did not let the journalists for “33 kanal” entry the territory of the church in order to attend the meeting of the priests of Moscow patriarchate. The journalists were not allowed to attend the session of Mykolaiv municipal council,and in Odessa the guards of a private company obstructed the work of the journalists for 7 Channel who came to cover the accident where the lifting crane fell and caused the death of a constructor. In Zaporizhzhya the judges demanded an application letter to film the trial. The access to public information for the press was limited by the Kherson regional administration (failed to reply), and Mykolaiv regional administration (failed to provide a substantive answer) and the Ministry of culture (modified a category of inquiry). Also in January, the experts of IMI documented two facts of assault and battery and tow of threats. The journalists got threats via Facebook and physically. The assaults happened in Kyiv and in the Kyiv region. The victims are the journalists for StopCor and Business Pereyaslav. One incident identified as attack against an editorial board and one lawsuit filed against the mass media outlet. These incidents took place in Kyiv (lawsuit against Toronto television filed by the spiritual center “Vidrodzhennya” of Volodymyr Muntyan for a report aired in 2018 ) and in the region of Kherson 9unknown persons dispersed tear gas in the editorial office of Novyy den newspaper and opened fire against the windows). Thus, since beginning of the year IMI has identified 7 incidents involving obstruction to the journalistic activity, 3 incidents of limitation of the access to the public information, 2 incidents of assaults and battery and 2 incidents of threats. More detailed information of press freedom is available under the heading Freedom of press barometer. The Institute of Mass information conducts the monthly monitoring of the condition of press freedom in Ukraine in the following categories: physical aggression, censorship and access to information, economic and political pressure, legal pressure and cyber-crimes against mass media and journalists. The monthly report includes only cases related to freedom of press and professional journalism. More details about methodology can be found here.. The journalists could contact our lawyers to get advice on our emergency line – (050) 447-70-63 (working days and the election day) and to e-mail: info@imi.org.ua.
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