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"Ukrainian Pravda" reports death threats to their team, including Mykhailo Tkach

14.05.2024, 15:56

"Ukrainian Pravda" editors report death threats to journalist Mykhailo Tkach, the media outlet's chief investigator.

As the team notes, Tkach received a text in a messenger app on May 10 from someone who called themselves Oleksandr Slobozhenko (the subject of the media outlet's recent investigation "Unfit"). He offered the journalist to "make peace" in exchange for money.

"The text closed with the following words: 'I advise you not to wait too long before answering. I know how to fight, too,'" the newspaper writes.

The UP noted that the next day, May 11, there have been multiple unsuccessful attempts to access the journalist's Monobank account.

The media outlet also says that Mykhailo Tkach started receiving dozens of calls from unknown numbers and text messages with authorization codes from banks and credit companies.

On May 13, at least 10 "Ukrainian Pravda" employees received threatening letters with the following content:

"I already wrote to Tkach about this, but he probably didn't understand, I'll try to get the idea through one last time. Sometimes knowing when to shut your mouth can save a life. My proposal to resolve the issue peacefully is valid, I'm waiting for an answer. Z."

The UP remarks that identical messages were sent not only to the corporate, but also to the personal e-mail inboxes of the UP journalists, including the inboxes that have not been used for a long time.

"We regard these actions as an attempt to influence and intimidate both Mykhailo Tkach and other members of Ukrainian Pravda team.

"The team is filing a statement with the law enforcers regarding attempts to pressure, threaten and obstruct journalistic work and asks them to identify the sender of these letters," the media outlet said in their statement.

Previous attacks on Mykhailo Tkach

In early October "Ukrainian Pravda" journalist Mykhailo Tkach reported SMS-bombing and mass phone calls after the publication of his story "Wartime Fast and Furious. How the capital's residents are being terrorized by street races" on September 28.

Mykhailo Tkach later reported obstruction to his reporting and suggested it was connected with the release of the aforementioned material.

On October 13, Mykhailo Tkach reported being hit by a car. He added that he is "not inclined" to associate this case with his professional work, but noted that the VAZ driver sped up in front of a pedestrian crossing and in front of him. The Committee for Protection of Journalists (CPJ) called on the Ukrainian authorities to investigate the persecution of the Ukrainska Pravda team and the obstruction of the work of journalist Mykhailo Tkach.

On the evening of November 17, 2023, "Ukrainian Pravda" journalist Mykhailo Tkach was assaulted while filming in Kozyn, Kyiv oblast.

When a visitor's security noticed the filming, they started shining the high beams and blocking the journalists' cars.

"I got out of the car, said that I was a journalist for 'Ukrainian Pravda'. The security guards started blocking me, and one approached me and kicked the camera, and also hit me," said Tkach.

The Kyiv Oblast opened a case for obstruction of journalistic work (Part 2 of Article 171 of the Criminal Code).

In April 2024, the police sent indictments against citizens O. and Kh., charged with assaulting the "Ukrainian Pravda" journalist Mykhailo Tkach near the "Tandyr" restaurant in Kozyn (Kyiv oblast) on November 17, 2023, to court.

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