HOTLINE(050) 447-70-63
We are available 24/7
Leave your contact details
and we contact you
Thank you for reaching out

Or contact us:

[email protected]

(050) 447-70-63

File a complaint

Freedom of Speech Barometer for June 2022

07.07.2022, 12:45

28 crimes against freedom of speech in Ukraine have been recorded by the Institute of Mass Information in June. Of these, 22 were committed by russia against the media and journalists on Ukrainian territory.

These crimes include wounding and firing on journalists, threats, cyber attacks on Ukrainian media websites, disabling of Ukrainian broadcasting, media outlets closing due to russian shelling, blocking of access to media websites, and more.

At the same time, IMI has recorded six cases of freedom of speech violations for which the Ukrainian side is responsible.

This is according to the monitoring conducted by the Institute of Mass Information.

On June 1, military journalist of the Central Television and Radio Studio of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine "Military Television of Ukraine" Danylo Ishchenko was wounded in Kharkiv region while filming a russian breakthrough attempt. He was wounded in the leg, which the doctors had to amputate.

In June, five filming crews in the Donbas and Mykolaiv region have come under russian fire. Namely, these were the camera crews of the BBC, Radio Liberty, Suspilne, Ukraina TV channel, and the German Bild. All journalists remained unharmed.

The russians continue to threaten Ukrainian journalists. In particular, Zaporizhzhia publications 061.ua and inform.zp.ua, as well as Volyn media outlet Volyn Online, have repeatedly received emails with threats about imprisonment and interrogation in June. The russian group which calls itself NoName threatened to take revenge on 061.ua and inform.zp.ua websites for the fact that Ukrainian authorities have initiated criminal proceedings against the group. We remind you that the authorities opened a criminal case for threats sent from russia to the email inboxes of the Zaporizhzhia media outlets. The proceedings have been opened under Part 1 of Article 438 of the Criminal Code ("Violation of the Laws and Customs of War").

In addition, the russians continue to carry out cyber attacks on Ukrainian media platforms. For example, they had been attacking Ukraine's russian-speaking foreign language platform for several days in order to block access to the "FreeDom" marathon. The International Broadcasting of Ukraine has contacted the Ukrainian authorities, the investigation is currently underway.

The situation with freedom of speech in Ukraine for which the Ukrainian side is responsible

In June, IMI recorded six cases of violations of freedom of speech in Ukraine, for which the Ukrainian side is responsible. These are cases of threats, obstruction, indirect pressure and cybercrimes.

Sevgil Musaieva, editor-in-chief of "Ukrainian Pravda," and Sonia Lukashova, the media outlet's correspondent, faced threats via phone and on social media after the media outlet published an investigation into the dismissal of Commissioner Lyudmila Denisova. One of the messages that Musaieva received read: "Sevgil, I have a feeling that someone will cut your throat. I don't know who and when, but run."

In addition, the names of Musaieva and Lukashova ended up in the "Myrotvorets" database, which published their personal information and accused them of using "so-called journalistic activities" to support russia. Lukashova's page was updated or created on June 27, and Musaieva's on June 30.

Some cases of obstruction were related to non-admission of journalists to court sessions. For instance, in Lviv, journalists from a number of publications were not allowed to attend the meeting of the Eighth Appeal Administrative Court of Lviv banning the activities of the "Opposition Platform – For Life" political party. According to the editor of "Nashi Hroshi. Lviv" media outlet Oleksandra Hubytska, the court ignored them despite having promised to announce whether they would be allowed to attend the hearing.

Another case of non-admission occurred in Lutsk, when Yulia Antonyuk, journalist for the "Volynska Sluzhba Novyn" news agency, was not allowed to attend a meeting of the Lutsk City District Court of Volyn Region, allegedly due to quarantine restrictions and objections from the session's parties.

Violations have been recorded in five regions: Kyiv, Odesa, Lviv, Volyn, and Ternopil.

russia's crimes

Wounded journalists – 1

1. Military journalist Danylo Ishchenko wounded in Kharkiv region during filming

01.06.2022

Danylo Ishchenko, military journalist with the Central Television and Radio Studio of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, was wounded in the line of duty.

This was announced by the Military Television of Ukraine on their Facebook page.

It is reported that the doctors decided to amputate the limb and prescribed appropriate treatment and rehabilitation.

Danylo Ishchenko's colleagues ask everyone who cares to join and support him and donate to the card of his mother E. Ishchenko: 5355075010938266.

In a comment to IMI, Acting Head of the Central Television and Radio Studio of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine Serhiy Kaminskyy said that Danylo Ishchenko was wounded on June 1 in Kharkiv region while filming a russian breakthrough attempt.

"He was carrying out his duties as a military journalist. He was holding a camera, gathering information. The russians were attempting a breakthrough and there was mortar fire, about four mines fell near them. He almost managed to get into the shelter on time, but a mine fragment caught up with him," Kaminskyy said, adding that his leg could not be saved.

As IMI reported, on June 10, author of the "Recruit.UA" program, former head of "Armiya FM" and the Military Television of Ukraine Oleksiy Chubashev was killed in action. On February 24, 2022, he went back to serve in the UAF. Oleksiy was 30 years old, he was survived by his wife, young daughter and son, who was born in March this year.

Firing on journalists – 5

1. BBC filming crew comes under russian fire in the Donbas

07.06.2022 BBC correspondent Orla Guerin, along with her filming crew, came under russian fire in the Donbas, ВВС reports.

When the shelling began, the journalists hid in an armored car.

"We just had to take more cover, get more protection inside our armored car, there was an incoming attack. The troops say it was a cluster bomb, and it landed less than a mile away. Now, the last half an hour or so there have been constant warnings about incoming fire, we had to run and take cover, the troops have taken cover, and we have heard plenty outgoing fire," the journalist said.

"It is very clear that the war in this area is extremely active, and the russians are trying hard to push forward," said Guerin.

Ukrainian troops told her that the russians had taken the experience of defeat near Kyiv into account and were now covering the Donbas with artillery fire. However, they are not going to stop resisting, because, as serviceman Ivan put it, russia has already seized Ukrainian territory half the size of Italy.

2. Radio Liberty correspondent comes under russian fire along with a soldier

10.06.2022 On June 10, Radio Liberty correspondent Serhiy Horbatenko, along with Roman Ternovsky, a soldier of the 122nd Battalion of the Izyum District Territorial Defense, came under russian fire in Donetsk region, Radio Liberty reports.

They left Slovyansk in the direction of Lysychansk to deliver a backpack from volunteers to a military medic. They drove to the Bakhmut–Lysychansk highway and came under fire by russian troops.

When the journalist asked if they were being targeted, the military said yes.

"Here you saw what the so-called 'road of life' from Bakhmut to Lysychansk looks like right now. Fortunately, we stopped on time and turned around, and, as Roman says, as we were already leaving, there right behind us a shell landed and exploded. In other words, a russian artillery spotter is sitting somewhere nearby and directing the fire on everyone who moves on this road," Serhiy Horbatenko said.

After that, the journalist and the military drove to the city of Siversk, which is being constantly shelled by russian troops. Upon arrival, he saw smoke and no people on the streets.

Later, the journalist and the military managed to take the backpack to the military doctor.

As IMI reported, on May 28, Radio Liberty correspondent Maryan Kushnir and photographer Serhiy Nuzhnenko came under fire by russian troops near Bakhmut, Donetsk region. Journalists had been filming a story about the Ukrainian army's counterattack, and the positions of the UAF were fired upon by russian artillery.

3. Suspilne journalists come under fire in Lysychansk

13.06.2022 Suspilne journalists Khrystyna Havryliuk and Taras Ibrahimov came under fire in the center of Lysychansk along with their colleagues, Suspilne reports.

They were evacuated by the military of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. As the journalists reported, none of them have been injured.

According to the Ukrainian military, russian troops fire on Lysychansk almost every day. They say that due to the significant advantage in artillery, the russian army can "cover" entire districts of the city. About 15,000 civilians remain in such conditions.

4. "Ukraina" channel filming crew comes under russian fire in Mykolaiv region

19.06.2022 The filming crew of "Ukraina" TV channel came under russian fire twice in the village of Luch, Mykolaiv region, while filming a reportage.

This was reported to IMI by the channel's correspondent Artem Dzhepko.

According to him, no one was injured during the shelling.

“We are all ok, but it's only because we run fast and reacted to the shelling quickly. We came under fire twice in an hour. At first it was a GRAD or cluster munitions. The second time it was something heavy. Maybe a tank, an ACS or a 'Pion,'" Artem said.

He does not believe that they were being targeted deliberately. According to Artem, the russian military shells the villages of Luch, Shevchenkov,e and Prybuhske every day.

According to the journalists, they were filming a story about the lives of people staying under fire.

"We went there to find out how people are surviving, what they eat, to record the ruscists' crimes. Then we wanted to visit our boys on their positions. But the shelling was very heavy, so we left quickly," said Artem Dzhepko.

5. Bild journalists come under fire while leaving Lysychansk

22.06.2022 On June 22, journalists of the German Bild came under russian fire on the way out of Lysychansk (Luhansk region). This was reported on the Bild website.

According to the newspaper, Bild reporter Paul Ronzheimer, along with photographer Giorgos Moutafis and Vadym Moisenko, came under fire while trying to leave Lysychansk, which has been almost completely surrounded by the russian army.

None of them was injured. Only the car was damaged – a broken window.

The newspaper does not know whether the journalists had been targeted, but notes that the road to and from Lysychansk has been repeatedly attacked in recent weeks.

"The attack once again shows that the russian army does not differentiate between military and civilian targets, but simply bombs everything," Ronzheimer said.

Persecution of journalists, threats, intimidation – 7

1. russians send threats about imprisonment in Siberia to Zaporizhzhia website 061.ua again

02.06.2022 Zaporizhzhia website 061.ua received yet another batch of threatening emails from russia. The media workers are being threatened with imprisonment and colonies in Siberia. The publication's journalists reported this to IMI representative in Zaporizhzhia region.

On June 2, the editorial office received an email from user Mikhail Kotov sent via the mail.ru (internet.ru) email service. "If you are not afraid of FPS RF's penal colonies in Siberian federal district, you may keep promoting the Ukrainian regime. But prepare some warm clothes at least, for your lengthy vacation to jail is going to be a cold one!" the email reads.

On June 6, the editorial staff received an email from user Vladislav Pavlov with the content which the editors had already received at the end of May. It again informs the journalists about the fate of Ukraine's gold and currency reserves and threatens them with being imprisoned for their professional activities.

“Have you heard that the Ukrainian authorities have already been issued a secret order to move all gold and currency reserves out of the country? Soon Zelensky will run away. And all those who supported the Ukrainian neo-Nazi regime, including informational support, will be held accountable for their crimes under the law of the russian federation. Get ready, propagandists!” the letter reads.

2. russians threaten "Volyn Online" with interrogations and imprisonment

10.06.2022 The editorial office of Volyn Online has received new threats from russia about interrogations and imprisonment. This is the 19th russian-language letter sent to the editorial team.

This was reported to IMI representative in Volyn region by "Volyn Online" editor Maryana Metelska.

According to her, on June 10, the website received a letter in russian from an unknown user "Valeriy Naumov" with the following content:

"The Investigative Committee of russia has opened a criminal case against all employees of your publication. The case was instituted under the 'Extremism' article of the Criminal Code. All your contacts and personal details have been submitted to russian authorities. After the russian army occupies the settlements where you live and work, you will face third degree interrogations and imprisonment. You can testify in the case and avoid this punishment if you resign from the media you work for right now."

On June 6, the editorial office received a letter suggesting that the current government was not going to stay in power for long and that President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy was allegedly fleeing the country. In addition, the email threatened the editors with accountability under the laws of the russian federation for the content they publish.

Earlier, the "Volyn Online" editorial office received threats of prosecution for spreading "lies about the actions of the russian armed forces."

3. Zaporizhzhia website 061 receives threats about interrogations and imprisonment from russia

10.06.2022 The editorial email inbox of Zaporizhzhia website 061.ua received another letter from russia containing threats of interrogations and imprisonment.

The editorial staff reported this to IMI representative in Zaporizhzhia region.

According to the journalists, the editorial team has received such emails before.

On June 10, the editors received an email from user "Anatoly Antonov," sent through the Internet.ru mail service. The letter, in particular, states: "The Investigative Committee of russia has opened a criminal case against all employees of your publication. The case was instituted under the 'Extremism' article of the Criminal Code. All your contacts and personal details have been submitted to russian authorities. After the russian army occupies the settlements where you live and work, you will face third degree interrogations and imprisonment. You can testify in the case and avoid this punishment if you resign from the media you work for right now."

4. Little-known russian NoNames swear to take revenge on 061.ua editors for opening a case against them

16.06.2022 A little-known russian group of hackers who call themselves NoName057(16) threatens to punish the staff of Zaporizhzhia edition 061.ua for the fact that Ukrainian law enforcement authorities have opened criminal proceedings against the group.

This was reported to IMI representative in Zaporizhzhia region by members of the editorial team.

On June 16, the editorial inbox received a letter from hackers with the subject "On a criminal case against russian hackers," sent through russian email service bk.ru. In the letter, sent on behalf of Eva Yudina, the NoName group is being outraged by the criminal proceedings against them and says that the journalists will be held accountable for "crimes against humanity." In the email, the NoNames use scans of the news published on the IMI website as confirmation of the criminal proceedings having been initiated.

The email initially recognizes Ukrainian law enforcement officers, but later calls them "pseudo-law enforcement officers," and call the Ukrainian "propagandists."

The NoNames admit that they have sent threats to the Ukrainian media, calling them a "warning" about the responsibility they would face for "spreading anti-russian fakes, discrediting russia's actions in Ukraine, and inciting ethnicity-based hatred against russians."

"Cowardly and lying propagandists were so frightened by emails from russian hackers that they immediately ran to snitch to the authorities. Instead of opening criminal proceedings against their own propagandist compatriots, Ukrainian pseudo-law enforcement officers accused group NoName057(16) of 'violating the rules of warfare' for some reason. On behalf of NoName057(16) we declare that there is and can be no justice in Ukraine, and all the lying 'journalists' and their supervisers from neo-Nazi structures who opened criminal proceedings against us are just serving the criminal regime of a former Soviet republic and a Banderite junta, which had seized power after the so-called Euromaidan. Sooner or later, they will be held accountable for all their crimes against humanity and will receive a just punishment. Hackers from NoName057(16)," the email reads.

As IMI reported, Zaporizhzhia website 061.ua has been receiving threatening emails from russians since March. The letters are signed by various users and contain threats of punishment, torture, imprisonment, interrogation. The editorial board has also been repeatedly threatened by the group NoName057(16).

The authorities have opened criminal proceedings for email threats received by Zaporizhzhia editorial offices from russia. The criminal proceedings have been instituted under Part 1 of Article 438 of the Criminal Code “Violation of the laws or customs of war.” The sanction of the article provides for imprisonment for a term of eight to twelve years.

5. russian NoNames swear to take revenge on another Zaporizhzhia website

16.06.2022 A group of russian hackers calling themselves NoName057(16) is threatening another Zaporizhzhia newspaper, inform.zp.ua, with punishment for Ukrainian authorities instituting a criminal case against the group.

This was reported by inform.zp.ua editor-in-chief Eric Brynza to IMI representative in Zaporizhzhia region.

An email with the topic "On the criminal case against russian hackers" arrived to the newspaper's editorial inbox on June 16. In the letter, signed by Myroslava Alekseeva and sent through inbox.ru email service, the hackers are being outraged that a criminal case has been opened against them and claim that the journalists will be held accountable for "crimes against humanity."

"The Ukrainian authorities have opened a criminal case for an email newsletter to employees of the Ukrainian media, in which the hacker group NoName057(16) warned them of their responsibility for spreading anti-russian fakes, discrediting russia's actions in Ukraine, and inciting ethnic hatred. The cowardly and lying propagandists were so frightened by emails from russian hackers that they immediately ran to snitch to the authorities. Instead of opening criminal proceedings against their own propagandist compatriots, Ukrainian pseudo-law enforcement officers accused group NoName057(16) of 'violating the rules of warfare' for some reason. On behalf of NoName057(16) we declare that there is and can be no justice in Ukraine, and all the lying 'journalists' and their supervisers from neo-Nazi structures who opened criminal proceedings against us are just serving the criminal regime of a former Soviet republic and a Banderite junta, which had seized power after the so-called Euromaidan. Sooner or later, they will be held accountable for all their crimes against humanity and will receive a just punishment. Hackers from NoName057(16)," the email reads.

As IMI reported, on June 16, the little-known group sent an identical threatening email to the editors of Zaporizhzhia's 061.ua.

The authorities have opened criminal proceedings for email threats received by Zaporizhzhia editorial offices from russia. The criminal proceedings have been instituted under Part 1 of Article 438 of the Criminal Code “Violation of the laws or customs of war.” The sanction of the article provides for imprisonment for a term of eight to twelve years.

6. Zaporizhzhia website inform.zp.ua receives threats from the rf again

29.06.2022 The editors of Zaporizhzhia website inform.zp.ua received new threats about imprisonment for "spreading fakes" from russia.

The employees of the editorial office told this to the IMI representative in Zaporizhzhia region.

On June 29, the inform.zp.ua editorial inbox received a short email from user "Elmira Afanasyeva," sent via russian mail service inbox.ru. The rhymed letter read, in particular: "russian troops are liberators, their operation saves lives and stability. And you, propaganda spreaders, will not escape criminal responsibility!"

The staff of Zaporizhzhia media outlet 061.ua also received two emails with threats.

On June 29, user "Alyona Pakhomova" sent them threats about imprisonment for their activities via the internet.ru mail service. The letter had the following content: "Deceiving the public with your agenda, spreading fakes for your propaganda, don’t you get a suspicion that Zelenskyy is a liar? Are you ready, through capitulation, with penal institutions as the place of your emigration, to meet such a shameful end?"

The next day, June 30, the journalists of the editorial office received another email that mentioned Judas, "Vlasovites," and "Motherland betrayers."

As IMI reported, these Zaporizhzhia websites have been receiving threats from russia since March. Namely, they have already received similar threats on March 25, March 26 and March 28, April 3, 4, April 7-11, April 17, April 25, May 15, May 23, May 25, June 2, 6, June 10, and June 16.

The authorities have opened criminal proceedings for email threats received by Zaporizhzhia editorial offices from russia. The criminal proceedings have been instituted under Part 1 of Article 438 of the Criminal Code “Violation of the laws or customs of war.” The sanction of the article provides for imprisonment for a term of eight to twelve years.

7. Zaporizhzhia website 061.ua receives threats from the rf again

29.06.2022 The editors of Zaporizhzhia website 061.ua received two emails with threats from russia.

The employees of the editorial office told this to the IMI representative in Zaporizhzhia region.

On June 29, user "Alyona Pakhomova" sent them threats about imprisonment for their activities via the internet.ru mail service. The letter had the following content: "Deceiving the public with your agenda, spreading fakes for your propaganda, don’t you get a suspicion that Zelenskyy is a liar? Are you ready, through capitulation, with penal institutions as the place of your emigration, to meet such a shameful end?"

The next day, June 30, the journalists of the editorial office received another email that mentioned Judas, "Vlasovites," and "Motherland betrayers."

Zaporizhzhia media outlet inform.zp.ua also received new threats about imprisonment for "spreading fakes" from russia.

On June 29, the inform.zp.ua editorial inbox received a short email from user "Elmira Afanasyeva," sent via russian mail service inbox.ru. The rhymed letter read, in particular: "russian troops are liberators, their operation saves lives and stability. And you, propaganda spreaders, will not escape criminal responsibility!"

As IMI reported, these Zaporizhzhia websites have been receiving threats from russia since March. Namely, they have already received similar threats on March 25, March 26 and March 28, April 3, 4, April 7-11, April 17, April 25, May 15, May 23, May 25, June 2, 6, June 10, and June 16.

The authorities have opened criminal proceedings for email threats received by Zaporizhzhia editorial offices from russia. The criminal proceedings have been instituted under Part 1 of Article 438 of the Criminal Code “Violation of the laws or customs of war.” The sanction of the article provides for imprisonment for a term of eight to twelve years.

Cyber attacks – 1

1. russians attack the foreign broadcasting platform for several days to block "FreeDom" marathon

30.06.2022 The russian-language international broadcasting of Ukraine was subject to cyber attacks from russia, aimed at undermining the spread of information about the war in Ukraine to the russian-speaking audience by blocking the operations of the "FreeDOM" marathon.

This is said in the statement of the State Enterprise "Ukrainian Multimedia Platform for Foreign Broadcasting," which manages the UATV and "Dom" TV channels, reports Ukrinform.

The cyber ​​attacks continued for several days. The company appealed to the Ukrainian authorities, the investigation is currently underway.

The "FreeDom" marathon is a daily television information project, broadcast in russian and produced both by the State Enterprise "UMPFB" and by partner media groups: Media Group Ukraine, Starlight News, "Inter Media Group," and 1+1 media.

UATV channel is a russian-speaking foreign language channel (coverage of over 60 countries in the world). The russian language broadcasting of the "Dom" channel was launched in 2020 for the audience in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine.

Disabling Ukrainian broadcasting and streaming russian propaganda – 6

1. In Kherson, the occupiers seize the "Armiya FM – Military Radio" and are broadcasting their own radio

16.06.2022 In Kherson, the occupying forces have seized the "Armiya FM – Military Radio" (Central Television and Radio Studio of the Ministry of Defense) frequency of 99.0 MHz and are broadcasting under the call sign "Radio russia."

This is stated in the response of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting to IMI's request.

In total, russian occupiers have seized eight radio frequencies and TV channels in four regions of Ukraine. Namely, the occupying power currently controls radio frequencies and TV channels in Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and Kherson regions.

2. Occupiers are broadcasting their propaganda in the Vovchansk and Chuhuiv districts of Kharkiv region

16.06.2022 In Vovchansk and Chuhuiv districts of Kharkiv region, on the 90.0 – 91.0 MHz frequencies, russia is broadcasting under the call sign "Kharkov Z."

This is stated in the response of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting to IMI's request.

In total, russian occupiers have seized eight radio frequencies and TV channels in four regions of Ukraine. Namely, the occupying power currently controls radio frequencies and TV channels in Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and Kherson regions.

3. Occupiers seize a radio frequency in Kupyansk district of Kharkiv region and are broadcasting under call sign "Radio Zhyzn"

16.06.2022 In Kupyansk district of Kharkiv region, the aggressor state is broadcasting on the 91.0 – 92.0 MHz frequencies under the call sign "Radio Zhyzn."

This is stated in the response of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting to IMI's request.

In total, russian occupiers have seized eight radio frequencies and TV channels in four regions of Ukraine. Namely, the occupying power currently controls radio frequencies and TV channels in Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and Kherson regions.

4. Occupiers are broadcasting russian TV channels in five cities and villages in Luhansk region

16.06.2022 in five cities and villages in Luhansk region (Starobilsk, Svatove, Zorynivka, Shyroky, Bilovodsk), russian channels are being broadcast through Zeonbud channels.

This is stated in the response of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting to IMI's request.

Namely, Pervy Kanal/Match, NTV, Pyaty Kanal, rossiya-K, Karusel, OTP, TVC, rossiya-1, rossiya 24, Vesti FM, Radio Mayak, Radio russia; Spas, STS, Domashny, TV-3, Pyatnitsa, Zvezda, Mir, TNT, Muz-TV; MX-3: Moya Planeta, Nauka, Techno 24, Moskva 24, Muzyka Pervogo, and Lugansk 24 are being broadcast.

In total, russian occupiers have seized eight radio frequencies and TV channels in four regions of Ukraine. Namely, the occupying power currently controls radio frequencies and TV channels in Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and Kherson regions.

5. Occupiers are broadcasting their TV channels in five cities in Zaporizhzhia region

16.06.2022 In five cities in Zaporizhzhia region (Melitopol, Berdyansk, Bilmak, Dniprorudne, Tokmak), the multichannel TV frequency has been seized. This is stated in the response of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting to IMI's request.

According to the NCTRB, the occupiers use the channels of the digital television operator Zeonbud to broadcast the following russian channels: Pervy Kanal, rossiya 1, rossiya 24, rocciya K, NTV, Pyaty Kanal, Match, Karusel, and three radio programs.

In total, russian occupiers have seized eight radio frequencies and TV channels in four regions of Ukraine. Namely, the occupying power currently controls radio frequencies and TV channels in Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and Kherson regions.

6. Occupiers are broadcasting "rossiya-24" TV channel in Melitopol

16.06.2022 In Melitopol, Zaporizhzhia region, "rossiya-24" channel is being broadcast on the frequency of the MTV Plus channel (MTV-PLUS TV and Radio Company LLC). This is stated in the response of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting to IMI's request.

According to the NCTRB, MTV Plus is engaged in collaboration with the aggressor state.

In total, russian occupiers have seized eight radio frequencies and TV channels in four regions of Ukraine. Namely, the occupying power currently controls radio frequencies and TV channels in Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk, Kharkiv, and Kherson regions.

Blocking Internet access to media – 1

1. Editors of 0532.ua website receive a notification about being blocked in russia

30.06.2022 The editors of the Poltava city website 0532.ua received a notification from Roskomnadzor about access to the resource being restricted. russia accuses the Poltava media outlet of covering the war in a way that is, in russia's opinion, unreliable.

The media outlet's owner Yuriy Boyko posted the email on his Facebook page.

In the email, the reason for the block is stated as follows: "False reports about acts of terrorism or other unreliable information of public significance, which is distributed under the guise of reliable information, which creates a threat of harm to the life and health of citizens, carries the threat of mass violations of public order..."

The editors received the email in two languages, russian and English, a month ago, but they only saw it now.

In the comment to the regional IMI representative, Yuriy Boyko stated that they will continue to work for Ukraine's victory and that "the journalists weren't spending their nights in the office in the first months of the war for nothing."

"I believe that this is a worthy reward for the entire team of the 0532.ua website. This means that it was not for nothing that the journalists weren't spending their nights in the office in the first months of the war for nothing. We received an email from russia, from Roskomnadzor! I want to frame this email and hang it in the editorial office! The Prosecutor General of the russian federation believes that the website Poltava 0532.ua spreads unreliable information about the war and destabilizes the situation in the russian federation. We promise to keep destabilizing it until Ukraine's Victory! Glory to Ukraine!" he wrote.

According to Yuri Boyko, the editors did not respond to the email, but they plan to send a request for Roskomnadzor to follow the course of the russian warship.

Media outlets that ceased their work due to russian occupation – 1

1. Modern culture magazine "SHO" closes down

01.06.2022 Due to the full-scale russian-Ukrainian war, the literary magazine "SHO" was forced to close down.

This was announced by the publication's editor-in-chief Oleksandr Kabanov on his Facebook page, Chytomо informs.

"Now my employees and I are completely out of work. War and Putin, god damn him. There has never been such a unique and large-scale educational project, dare I say, in the whole world. The magazine had been published in Russian and Ukrainian for 17 years. Full color, hard cover, all over Ukraine and beyond. It was the work of my whole life," he wrote.

The publication's website continues to operate.

SHO Magazine is a russian- and Ukrainian-language magazine dedicated to literature and culture. It had been published in Kyiv since 1995. The publication had been created as a humanitarian project aimed at expanding the Ukrainian cultural space.

"Thank you to everyone who was there and to those I wrote about. It was my crystal temple and my city of sin. Keep text notes about yourself, it is the history that lasts forever. It's endless," wrote one of the magazine's contributors, Oleksandr Proletarsky.

The "Kyivsky Lavry" International Literary Festival was also held by the magazine.

THE FREEDOM OF SPEECH SITUATION IN UKRAINE FOR WHICH THE UKRAINIAN SIDE IS RESPONSIBLE

Physical aggression

Threats – 2

1. Journalist from Odesa region reports threats; the police refuses to investigate

10.06.2022

Halyna Khalymonyk, journalist and editor of "Bilyaivka City" (Odesa region), said that a local resident was threatening her with physical violence, and the local police refused to investigate it.

She reported this in her blog and to IMI representative in Odesa region.

According to the journalist, the threats came in May 2022 from Oleksandr Savko, a Bilyaivka resident who wrote a post with hints of aggression on his Facebook page: "Oh, Halyna, you still have the strength and patience to write and make commissions from over the border? No conscience to come home? Yes, that's not enough... After all, when you return, you know what awaits you, right? Remember, Halya, you will be taken out of this world... For all your gossip, for all your fake posts, for all your fake 'publications,' for all the pictures of children used because of your stinky PR. I'm waiting for you... At home... Kurwa ... "

The journalist believes that the incident has to do with her journalistic activities, as the conflict arose over an article about the renaming of Moskovskaya Street in Bilyaivka. After that, the man began to leave his comments, cited by the editors.

As Halyna Khalymonyk said to IMI representative in Odesa region, she filed a statement to the authorities. As early as June 2, the Odesa District Department №2 replied that no objective confirmation a criminal offense having been committed had been found during the reviewing of her statement. At the same time, the document signed by the head of this department states that a preventive interview with citizen Savko has been held.

The journalist disagrees with the police's stance and is preparing a new complaint to the court and the prosecutor's office.

2. "Ukrainska Pravda" journalists receive threats of reprisal for the investigation about the former Commissioner – CPJ

30.06.2022 "Ukrainska Pravda" editor-in-chief Sevgil Musaieva and the publication's correspondent Sonya Lukashova received phone calls and threatening messages after the media outlet posted an investigation into the dismissal of Commissioner Lyudmila Denisova. The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) calls on the Ukrainian authorities to quickly and thoroughly investigate these threats. This is reported by ZN.ua.

"Ukrainian authorities must take all steps available to ensure the safety and well-being of journalists Sevgil Musaieva and Sonia Lukashova. Their work is a service to the Ukrainian public, and they should not face threats over their reporting," said the coordinator of CPJ's programs in Europe and Central Asia Gulnoza Said.

"Authorities must conduct a swift and efficient investigation into threats made against the journalists and hold those responsible to account. Ukraine already has a dire history of impunity in crimes against journalists," she emphasized.

An investigation posted by "Ukrainska Pravda" on June 27, written by Lukashova, covered the case of Commissioner Lyudmila Denisova, who was fired for allegedly exaggerating her reports of war crimes in the russian-occupied territories.

According to Musaieva, after the investigation was posted, she and Lukashova started receiving threats by phone and on social media. One of the messages that Musaieva received read: "Sevgil, I have a feeling that someone will cut your throat. I don't know who and when, but run."

She told CPJ that most of the threats came from anonymous sources, but added that some accounts had usernames.

"My job is to tell the truth, whatever it is, I don't take sides," she said.

The names of Musaieva and Lukashova ended up in the "Myrotvorets" database, which published their personal information and accused them of using "so-called journalistic activities" to support russia. Lukashova's page was updated or created on June 27, and Musaieva's – on June 30.

In 2016, "Myrotvorets" published the names, surnames, addresses, and contact details of more than five thousand Ukrainian and foreign reporters and media workers who applied for accreditation to work in the occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, and called them "terrorist accomplices," the media reported.

Obstruction – 2

1. Lviv court denies journalists entry to the hearing banning the OPFL

17.06.2022 The Eighth Administrative Court of Appeal of Lviv did not allow journalists to attend a court hearing banning the activities of the "Opposition Platform – For Life" political party. This was reported to IMI representatives in Lviv region by the journalists who were denied entry.

This is not the first time such a situation has occurred in this court, according to media reports.

Editor of the publication "Nashi Hroshi. Lviv" Oleksandra Hubytska said that the court ignored them despite having promised to announce whether they would be allowed to attend the hearing.

"We arrived early before the court hearing. At the entrance checkpoint, we said that we came to attend this and that case. The guard said he would let them know that we had come and they would let us know whether we would be allowed in or not. After 30 minutes, it became clear that no one would let us in. What is most annoying is that no one came out to us and said anything," she said.

Later, an air raid alarm went off in Lviv. According to Hubytska, the journalists were not even allowed to go to the court's bomb shelter because, as the court's staff explained, it was too small.

"We went outside and waited. After the alarm was over, we went back to the hall, near the security post. But he didn't tell us anything new," added the editor of "Nashi Hroshi. Lviv" Oleksandra Hubytska.

"Chesno" Movement analyst Ihor Feshchenko said that out of the 10 meetings they tried to attend, they were only allowed into three.

"We try to attend each of the hearings on the banning of political parties, which take place in the Eighth Administrative Court of Appeal since June 8. Out of the 10 sessions that have taken place during this time, we were only admitted into 3. Today, giving no explanation, they did not allow us to enter the court. In the previous days, they explained that they could not let us in due to the quarantine. Today they probably do not want to give the quarantine explanation because yesterday, due to the presiding judge's principle-based stance, we were allowed to attend the hearing on the ban of the 'Socialist Party of Ukraine.' Today, they are not responding to our requests for someone to come out and explain what is happening."

IMI lawyer Roman Holovenko advises the journalists to contest this denial. "Many state facilities have become much more closed after the full-scale invasion, and this is not always justified, as those are not always in the frontline regions. If the journalists try to contest this entry denial, at least some arguments will be provided, and if those are unjustified, it will be possible to resist it through legal means," the lawyer said.

In addition to the "Nashi Hroshi. Lviv" editor and the "Chesno" Movement analyst, the access to the court hearing has also been denied to "Pershyy Zakhidnyy" channel journalists and a representative of the OPORA Civic Network.

2. Journalist in Lutsk not allowed to attend a court hearing

30.06.2022 Yuliya Antonyuk, a journalist of the "Volynska Sluzhba Novyn" news agency, was not allowed to attend the meeting of the Lutsk City District Court of Volyn Region, allegedly due to quarantine restrictions.

The journalist informed the IMI representative in Volyn region about this.

On June 30, the court was supposed to consider the case about the cancellation of an order about dismissal and collection of unpaid salary for the period of forced absenteeism of the former Pidhaitsivka Village Council official Heorhii Stefanesa. He was the plaintiff against the aforementioned village council. We will remind you that this is the same Heorhii Stefanesa who attacked journalist Ludmila Yavorska when she came to Pidhaitsivka Village Council in 2021.

However, Yulia Antonyuk was not allowed to attend the court session with refrerence to objections from the session's parties and to quarantine restrictions.

"Before the start of the court session, I wrote a request for my admission to the session as a mass media representative, in an arbitrary form and providing all my personal details. Since, according to the judicial institution's employee, they do not have a sample of such a document, this very request was handed over to a court staff member. After being invited to the courtroom, the judge warned that a journalist would be present at the hearing. After that, she asked to present the documents and to state the reason for my presence at the meeting. Namely, covering of the trial for the above-mentioned online media outlet," the journalist said.

After that, the judge asked those in the room whether they were against the journalist's presence, to which the plaintiff's representative answered negative. He emphasized that he objects to the presence of this journalist, citing quarantine restrictions that are in effect until August 31, 2022. And he asked the court to adhere to these restrictions, so that only the participants in the case were present at the meeting. Literally: "The way it was before."

The defendant, a representative of the Pidhaitsivka Village Council, also objected to the journalist's presence at the meeting for similar reasons.

As a result, the court decided to deny the media representative the presence in the courtroom, as both sides objected to it and quarantine restrictions are in effect, and asked her to leave the premises of the hall.

IMI lawyer Roman Holovenko noted that the court can make a decision to restrict the access of persons who are not participants in the legal process to the court session during the quarantine announced by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, in accordance with the Law of Ukraine "On the Protection of the Population from Infectious Diseases," if participation in the court session poses a threat to a person's life or health.

At the same time, he says, according to Art. 25 of the Law on Information, for journalists, there is an exception and a way to work. Namely, after showing a document certifying their professional affiliation, a mass media employee has the right to collect information on sites of natural disasters, catastrophies, accidents, mass disturbances, hostilities, and in the territories where emergency state or emergency situation has been announced, or administrative and sanitary measures (quarantine) have been taken, except for cases provided by law (Part 4 of Article 25 in the 2020 edition).

Therefore, Roman Holovenko advised the journalist to contact the State Bureau of Investigation with regards to the current situation.

Indirect pressure

Other cases of indirect pressure – 1

1. "Myrotvorets" adds UP journalist to their database after an article about Denisova

28.06.2022 Ukrainska Pravda journalist Sonya Lukashova has been added to the Myrotvorets database, Detector Media reports.

She is accused of alleged "deliberate actions detrimental to the national security of Ukraine," of "manipulating socially significant information," and of "violating journalistic ethics."

As stated on Myrotvorets website, these are:

“Manipulation of socially significant information. Deliberate actions aimed at concealing the evidence of crimes committed by russian fascist invaders in the occupied territories of Ukraine in 2022. Activities incompatible with journalistic ethics."

This became known the day Sonia Lukashova's article “From Facebook to interrogations. Why did the Commissioner lose her job" was published on UP. It mentions some facts about ex-Commissioner Lyudmila Denisova with reference to anonymous sources. The article caused a resonance among readers, the discussion on the published information is ongoing.

It was also stated on the website that Sonya Lukashova allegedly "tried to obtain the text of Sternenko's suspicion notice through deception" and also "wrote about war veteran 'Puma's' links to the Sheremet case." Earlier, on November 7, 2019, UP published an article by Sonya Lukashova, citing anonymous sources about the alleged involvement of Donbas war veterans Inna ("Puma") and Vladislav Hryshchenko in the murder of journalist Pavlo Sheremet.

Earlier, such well-known personalities as former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and former First Channel editor-in-chief Marina Ovsyannikova, pro-russian propagandists and collaborators, have been added to the Myrotvorets database.

Detector Media wrote to Sonya Lukashova and hopes to get a comment from her.

Online pressure

Other cases of online pressure – 1

1. Unknown people create a clone of Ternopil website "Poglyad"

23.06.2022 A copy of Ternopil Internet resource "Poglyad" and its Facebook page has recently been created by unknown persons. This was announced by the website's editor-in-chief Nadiya Hresa.

“Friends, help. …Someone created a fake Poglyad page and a clone of the website to spread fake news. There's a link to the page and the publication they put in the ad in the comments. Please report," Hresa wrote on Facebook.

According to the IMI representative in Ternopil region, our colleagues have been sending reports for several hours now, but the Facebook page is still active.

It states that it was created on June 20. There are no news posts there at the moment. However, under the page's name, they launched a Facebook ad with an article from the website – about the newly appointed head of the Regional Office of Water Resources in Ternopil region.

According to the IMI representative, as for the website itself, the domain name differs by one letter – instead of poGlyad.te.ua, as in the original, it says poHlyad.te.ua. At first glance, the news feed even has content, but only for June 15-17. After that, it is emty. However, if you open the links to the news, they lead to corresponding ones on the original resource. In general, any activity on the fake website redirects you to the original resource. So the Poglyad clone has only one piece of content – the one criticizing the above-mentioned official.

As Nadiya Hresa told the IMI representative, she had already turned to the Security Service of Ukraine with regards to the incident. 

Freedom of speech defense

The journalist community's reaction – 2

1. Kherson journalists call on their colleagues around the world to speak about the captive Ukrainian Kherson region

06.06.2022 Kherson journalists call on their colleagues all over the world to spread reliable information about the Kherson region, temporarily occupied by the russian military, to spread the information from Kherson journalists and to encourage the world to support Ukraine.

The media workers made this address today, on June 6, on the Journalist's Day at the Media Center Ukraine in Lviv, according to the IMI representative in Kherson region.

Journalists ask the world to speak about Kherson region, which is now under occupation.

“On the day of our professional holiday, we, Ukrainian journalists from different parts of Kherson region who are forced to stay in Lviv and other cities, appeal to you to spread reliable information about the Ukrainian Kherson region, temporarily occupied by russian troops. It is captive, but unbreakable," the address reads.

In the address, the journalists noted that the Kherson region has been under occupation for more than 100 days, the enemy has captured 94% of the region's territory. But, according to the address, from the very first days of the occupation patriotic citizens, including journalists, had been going to peaceful rallies and resisting the armed troops.

"Over time, the pressure has intensified, rallies became impossible, and abductions and torturing of activists, including journalists, began. Many activists were forced to leave the region – and there was no official 'green corridor.' Kherson region has been without communication for a week now – the occupier has shut down Ukrainian mobile operators, and continues the total monitoring of social media communications. They are trying to take away Kherson region's voice, but they cannot destroy its soul. We are Ukrainians, we are free," the address reads.

The journalists urge their colleagues to "speak even more about the captive Ukrainian Kherson region, to spread information from Kherson journalists – this motivates the people living under the occupation."

"Let's get closer to victory together, realizing that Ukraine is fighting for the future of Europe. Encourage the authorities of your countries to support Ukraine and russia's global isolation. Talk about the lack of official corridors for evacuation, turn to international institutions that may affect the humanitarian crisis that the occupier is artificially creating in the region.

"Dozens of our colleagues have lost their job due to Ukrainian media outlets being closed in the temporarily occupied territories, several are behind bars, and journalists need financial and psychological support. We are confident that together we will be able to strengthen the voice of the Ukrainian Kherson region, we will be able to win this audacious information war," the address reads.

It will be recalled that Kherson and part of the region are currently under russian occupation. Persecutions and crimes began almost from the first day of the occupation. On March 2, five armed russian occupiers seized the Suspilne.Kherson building. The occupiers shut down the broadcast of Ukrainian TV channels and launched russian channels on T2.

In addition, multiple media outlets in the region have ceased their work. Namely, in Henichesk, two publications closed down due to the occupation – "Novy Vizyt" and "Pryazovska Pravda."

The occupiers have also abducted journalists: journalist Oleh Baturyn in Kakhovka and journalist Oleksandr Hunko in Nova Kakhovka.

2. Ukrainian journalists call to punish russian propagandists for facilitating the genocide in Ukraine

23.06.2022 Ukrainian journalists call on the authorities to initiate sanctions against russian pseudo-journalists and to start the documenting of their crimes in order to bring them to justice.

This is stated in the journalists' address to their colleagues, public authorities, and the international community, which was published on June 22 in Kyiv at a media workers meeting "russian propaganda as an instrument of genocide of the Ukrainian people. Detection and exposure methods." The address was published by the Ukrayinsky Tyzhden magazine.

In the address, the journalists call on their colleagues to unite for an important purpose, despite the disputes, insults, and competition. They believe that those who call themselves journalists, military correspondents, or bloggers and help politicians and military commanders to fan the fire of war against Ukrainians should be held accountable for their crimes.

The authors of the address note that these people are not the press, but soldiers of the information war and therefore should be held responsible for their complicity in the russian aggression against Ukraine.

"Syria, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Africa – wherever putin's regime has brought war and suffering, these people cooperate with the russian secret services, clearly following their orders. They are instructed on how to cover political topics and they have supervisors, they generate dozens of fakes, wear military uniforms, have weapons and openly take part in battles. For which they later receive military awards. These people sometimes complain about harassment of the press, talk about freedom of speech, but in reality, in their words is mere propaganda, direct calls for the extermination of Ukrainians and support for war crimes. In fact, they are but soldiers of the information war, so they should be held accountable for complicity in the russian aggression against Ukraine," the appeal reads.

We are talking about genocide and crimes against humanity, which have no statute of limitations, the address says. The authors of the address remind that history has examples of propagandists taking responsibility for their crimes – the editor of the Nazi newspaper "Der Sturmer" Julius Streicher and heads of the Rwandan "Radio of the Thousand Hills."

"We call on the Ukrainian authorities to begin the process of documenting the crimes of russian propagandists and to bring them to justice. Their own Nuremberg awaits them. We call on the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy, as well as all relevant state bodies and services, to initiate sanctions against russian pseudo-journalists. The whole world must join in imposing sanctions against the occupier's allies and do everything possible to bring them to justice for calling to wage an aggressive war and facilitating the genocide in Ukraine," the appeal reads.

The petitioners also call on their colleagues in Ukraine and throughout the free world to join the fight "against these propagandists who are helping the russian army to destroy Ukrainians."

"Join our call, record your own video addresses, support us on social media. Join our common fight! We emphasize: the information staff of the criminal russian regime is #NotThePress, they are just trying to hide behind this title. This is #FakeJournalism – and they should get the punishment they deserve," the address reads.

The document was signed by: editor-in-chief of the NSTU Television Directorate Yuriy Makarov, "Ukrayinsky Tyzhden" editor-in-chief Maksym Vikhrov, StopFake executive director Ruslan Deynychenko, strategic communications expert Viktor Trehubov, journalist Denys Kazanskyy.

As IMI reported, on May 12, Ukrainian journalists and human rights groups called for the exclusion of hosts who have previously played along with the enemy's rethoric and used to spread kremlin propaganda for many years. This was about Vasyl Holovanov, Tigran Martirosyan, Natasha Vlashchenko, Tetyana Honcharova, Nazar Dovhyy, Volodymyr Poluyev, Anna Stepanets, Anastasia Dauhule.

Yet, the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine opposed the exclusion of pro-russian hosts from the telethons.

Media groups also sided with the TV hosts. "Inter" TV channel stated that they had no doubts about the pro-Ukrainian civic stance of their host Anastasia Dauhule. This has also been stated by "Media Group Ukraine."

The address has been signed by over 326 journalists, media, NGOs and movements. 27 people from "Media Group Ukraine," in particular from Ukraine and Ukraine 24 channels, have signed the address.

On May 17, a petition to suspend the hosts who used to support kremlin propaganda from any telethons has been registered on the Cabinet's website.

Liked the article?
Help us be even more cool!
Do you want to be first to learn about the new research of the Institute of Mass Information? Subscribe to the newsletter!
Thank you for suscribing!