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Slidstvo.info’s parliamentary accreditation withdrawn (updated)

28.10.2020, 17:13

The press service of the Verkhovna Rada Office has suspended the accreditation of the Slidstvo.Info edition, on the decision of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Freedom of Speech.

The press service of the parliament said it in its letter dated of October 26 and addressed to the editor-in-chief of "Investigation.Info" Anna Babinets, which she posted on her Facebook page.

Accreditation has been terminated as such that that was not in compliance with its objective: "for a comprehensive, objective and balanced coverage of the activity of Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine accomplished by the journalists, technical staff of mass media."

According to the parliament’s press service, on October 20, the Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information, based on the results of monitoring the coverage of the Verkhovna Rada's activities by accredited journalists, decided to terminate the accreditation of the edition and its journalists. 

As to the press service, a request had been sent to the editorial office with a request to provide pieces to confirm coverage of the parliament's activities for 2019-2020 by the journalists accredited to the Verkhovna Rada of Slidstva.Info.

The press service emphasized, they did not receive any response within a month, and their own monitoring "also did not confirm the existence of publications covering activities of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine."

Anna Babinets noted that the editorial board sees in such a decision a crackdown on freedom of speech and would appeal against it.

“We in "Investigation.Info" see in such a decision of the Verkhovna Rada a crackdown on freedom of speech and pressure on independent media by government agencies. We will appeal against it and be sure to inform all influential international organizations, ” she wrote .

Babinets cited examples of Slidstva.Info's work: “This is our “Henchmen” project about the assistants of MPs, which forced the Verkhovna Rada to finally start publishing the names of assistants who were previously classified. This is our film "Book Lovers' Club" about how votes are sold in the parliament: individually or in whole factions. We told everyone about the acquired Romanian citizenship of parliamentarian Oleksandr Dubinsky. We found the hidden foreign real estate of people's deputies Palitsa and Gerega. And recently we told how rich MPs apply for financial assistance from the budget. "

According to the minutes of the sitting of the Committee on Freedom of Speech, this was Iryna Karmelyuk, the head of the press service of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, who had asked to deprive of accreditation the journalists who did not cover the activities of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

Speaking at the committee meeting, Iryna Karmelyuk noted that today more than 3,000 media representatives were accredited in the Verkhovna Rada. The press service of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine sent them letters requesting to provide materials on the work of the parliament for the accreditation period 2019-2020. 

She asked the committee to revoke the accreditation of journalists of those publications that failed to cover the activities of the Verkhovna Rada.

In addition to Slidstvo.Info, it was proposed to revoke the accreditation of 21 more publications: the online publication POLITMARKET.INFO, mind.kiev.ua, the newspaper Patriot PLUS Patriot, the online publication VD Panorama, and Pravova Informatyka (Legal Informatics), U-Control Media, AURB FALCON news agencies, Stop Corruption TV, MSGC Info, Orcas Media, Journalists Against Corruption, Donbass Public Television , Industrial Policy Agency, magazines Time of the First ”,“ Volunteer of Ukraine ”, “ NikVesti ” newspaper ,“ East and West Together ”,“ Slovo PATRIOTA ”,“ Life of Auto Euro Force ”,“ Veteranskaya Pravda ”newspaper,“ Ruska Pravda ”news agency.

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