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Kyiv Court blocked access to 12 websites

26.03.2021, 11:56
Photo credit: picture-alliance / chromorange / C.Ohde / DW
Photo credit: picture-alliance / chromorange / C.Ohde / DW

The Pechersk District Court of Kyiv has ruled to seize the intellectual property rights of domain names of 12 editions, including “Apostroph”, “Glavkom”, “Golos” and other media, and ordered mobile network operators and Internet providers to block access to the sites of these media.

This decision was issued on February 18, accepting a motion from the lawyer of the former head of "Spetstechnoexport" Pavel Barbul, as "Apostroph" and "Glavkom" reported.

According to the editions, some providers and operators have already blocked the access. It happened despite the fact that on March 10, senior investigator of the Pechersk Police Department Vasyl Poplavskyi claimed that Pavel Barbul's claims were ungrounded, the latter called the reports about him on the websites to be "non-public." The same day, the investigator dropped the criminal case due to the lack of corpus delicti.

However, on March 24, despite the closure of the proceedings, the mobile operator Lifesell, Internet providers Triolan and Information Technologies blocked the access to Apostrophe, Glavkom and other publications throughout Ukraine.

Mykola Pidvezyany, editor-in-chief of “Glavkom”, appealed to operators and providers to urgently review the decision and unblock the site. 

“On March 10, 2021, due to the absence of a criminal offense in the act, the proceedings in the case № 120 201 0006 0003 326 of December 4, 2020 were closed by the relevant Resolution. In our opinion, the persons who sent the decision of the Pechersk District Court of Kyiv of February 18, 2021 to mobile operators and providers, misled them with their actions. "The Glavkom news agency appeals to all the above-mentioned operators to unblock the website https://glavcom.ua/ and stop obstructing the journalistic activities of our editorial office and other media," Pidvezyany said. 

"The court decision to block websites by the order from a former official is an outrageous precedent that has nothing to do with the principles of freedom of speech. If this continues, any mass media in our country can be shut down on click, on the sole ground that its publications made angry someone who has influence, ”said Denis Popovych, editor-in-chief of the online publication “Apostrophe”. 

On February 25, IMI reported, The Holosiivskyi District Court of Kyiv has ruled to block access to 426 websites. This decision was made on February 4, according to the website of the National Commission for the State Regulation of Communications and Informatization.

The court held "torestrict intellectual property rights that could arise for the Internet users, when they use web resources (426. - Ed. ) by obliging Internet service providers… to deny access to them," said the report.

The arrest was imposed as part of the criminal proceedings №12020100010005155 of 17 December 2002, which are being investigated for a large scale fraud.

Livejournal (livejournal.com), Vinnytsia media 20 Minutes (20minut.ua), Russian RBC (rbc.ru) and others were among the resources to be suspended.

The full list of banned sites is available here .

The Holosiivskyi District Prosecutor's Office discharged an attachment of intellectual property rights that users had when using 426 sites, as the prosecutor's office said replying to a request from the Radio Liberty .

"On February 25, 2021, the supervisor of pre-trial proceedings decided to drop the criminal proceedings and discharge an attachment of intellectual property rights that Internet users had when using 426 web resources," the statement said.

On February 4, 2021, the investigating judge of the Holosiivskyi District Court of Kyiv seized the intellectual property rights that arose while using 426 resources.

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