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Defense Minister sues journalist for publication at $10 thousands and demands arrest of her property

26.02.2013, 08:20
 Ukraine's defense minister Pavlo Lebedev asks Leninsky District Court in Sevastopol to recover from Yanina Vaskovska, Novy Region news agency correspondent, 10 thousand dollars for the publication of false information that caused moral damage and humiliated honor, dignity and business reputation of the plaintiff. Vaskovska reported this to journalists, according to Ukrainian news.

According to her, the reason for going to court was the publication of material about the purchase of an X-ray machine by the Fund for Social-Economical Development of Sevastopol, which allegedly belongs to Lebedev, for the Sevastopol hospital number 9.

The information was published with a reference to the press service of the Fund.

Later, "New Region" on its website published an article in which it accused Lebedev of appropriating the merit of purchasing the equipment for the hospital, which, according to the "New Region", was purchased at the expense of the state budget, as a result of a tender in 2012.

Only in January 2013, fund manager Alla Shcherbakova denied the information of "New Region" that the Fund reported about the purchase before the parliamentary elections. This was followed by a lawsuit against Vaskovska.

At the first meeting of trial on February 22, the prosecution requested to detain Vaskovska and to arrest her property.

"I did not write the lines that offended him. As it often happens in news agencies, the text is created collectively. Why Lebedev did not sue "New Region"? Today, by the reaction of colleagues, I can see that it is a campaign of intimidation. The Minister wants to show that every journalist can personally be under attack. It does not matter that I was not afraid of any attempts to limit my freedom of movements and threats to arrest the property. Others fear - for themselves. They received a signal "- Vaskovska wrote on her page in Facebook.

The next court hearing will be held on March 4.

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