Press freedom: An own goal for Ukraine
02 Jul 2012
An international joint mission by several media and human rights group including ARTICLE 19 visited Ukraine in April 2012 and today launched their report entitled "Make freedom of expression a reality, Mr President" - A Report on Press Freedom in Ukraine. The report outlines concerns ‘regarding media freedom in the country and calls on President Yanukovich to ensure the right to freedom of expression.
"Make freedom of expression a reality, Mr President" - A Report on Press Freedom in Ukraine is published against the backdrop of developments in the Georgiy Gongadze’s murder investigation, where the Kyiv Appellate Court has upheld on 26 June the decision to drop criminal charges against former President Kuchma, one of the high ranking government officials implicated.
During the mission to Ukraine, from 2 to 4 April 2012, the participants called specifically on President Yanukovich to ensure that the judicial process in the case of Georgiy Gongadze’s murder in 2000 is independent, transparent and fair.
The mission expressed concern at the time that the trial against one of the alleged organisers of the murder, Oleksiy Pukach, continues to be held behind closed doors. Now that the charges against former President Kuchma, who has long been implicated in Georgiy Gongadze’s disappearance and murder, is worrying, as without the necessary transparency it is difficult to believe that there is political will to bring those accountable to justice.
"Make freedom of expression a reality, Mr President" - A Report on Press Freedom in Ukraine focuses on four main areas of concern: corruption, media markets, independence and impunity. Among the fourteen recommendations, it specifically calls for:
- The authorities to allow media professionals to report openly on corruption
- An immediate end to “envelope” payments to journalists and other media professionals
- An efficient structure for the Interagency Working Group involving media professionals, the government, and the public to engage in issues of press freedom
- The authorities to ensure that the Access to Information law is respected and that information requested is provided in a timely manner
- Increasing the availability of digital channels reserved for regional and local broadcasters
- An open inquiry into why new companies without experience in digital broadcasting were granted licences over long-established regional broadcasters
- An independent, transparent and fair judicial process in the Gongadze murder case.
Receive immediate or weekly updates on the right to freedom of expressionSubscribe
Help us support lorem sit ipsum dolor amet
Your donation dummy text about what their money does.Donate