IMI calls on authorities to ensure unhindered moving of journalists, including by public transport
The NGO "Institute of Mass Information" calls on the state authorities and local self-government bodies to ensure the unhindered moving of journalists, including by means of public transport, upon presentation of a journalist's press card. This is the message of the official letter signed by IMI and sent to all regional and city councils of Ukraine on April 7.
IMI made such an appeal, as the NGO had received several complaints from regional journalists saying that some state and local governments restricted and obstructed movements of journalists. At the same time, the authorities referred to the absence of journalists in the list of professions listed in subparagraph 9 of paragraph 2 of the Resolution No. 255 of April 2, 2020 "On Amendments to the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine Decree No. 211 of March 11, 2020" issued by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, including restrictions on using public transport by them, restricting the movement of TV crews, and so on.
IMI recalls that in accordance with Section II, Section 3, of the Law of Ukraine "On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts to Provide Additional Social and Economic Guarantees in Relation to the Spreading of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-2019)" local self-government bodies have to ensure the unhindered movement of journalists:
“3. For the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, the National Police, regional, Kyiv city state administrations together with local self-governments in carrying out measures to prevent emergence and spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), as it is provided by the quarantine, which has been established by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, to ensure an unhindered movement of the journalists within the territory of Ukraine, including the territories where an emergency has been declared. "
IMI calls on public authorities and local governments to act within the legal framework. In particular, they have to remember that in accordance with the Article 8 of the Constitution of Ukraine, the rule of law prevails in Ukraine.
“In the context of the above, we ask you to ensure fulfillment of the provisions of section 3 of Section II of the Law of Ukraine" On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts to Provide Supplementary Social and Economic Guarantees in Relation to the Spread of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-2019) ", by establishing the right of an unhindered movement of journalists, including by means of public transport, upon presentation of a journalist's press cards in the legislative acts issued by authorities, local self-government bodies, ”the statement reads.