Serbian journalist sentenced to jail for unauthorised publication

Freelance journalist Stefan Cvetkovic was found guilty by the court in in the city of Vrsac for unauthorised publication and presentation of another’s texts, portraits and recordings on March 14. He received two years and three months in jail and must pay €17,000 fine for insult. According to the legal advisor of Independent Journalists’ Association of Serbia (NUNS), Cvetkovic had filed complaints against the judgment and is waiting for the second instance court ruling. He has not been detained till the appeal. Cvetkovic was prosecuted after the complain by three officials from the ruling party. The well-known journalist was investigating…

Three more journalists detained in Belarus

UPDATE (24.03.2017):  Hanna Dus’ and Viktar Kachan were detained yesterday in Babruysk, when they tried to report on a trial, the journalists were taken to the prosecutor’s office for a talk and later released. Sviatlana Tsishko, the editor of the website Kraj.by, was fined for approximately €200 for publishing a story about a protest on the grounds that the article can be interpreted as an invitation to the unsanctioned event. UPDATE (23.03.2017):  Two more journalists Liubou Luniova and Volha Davydava were detained yesterday in Minsk, while reporting from the police department on the detention of a political activist. They were released in…

Ukraine: Impunity should end

Following two cases of impunity and careless investigation in Ukraine, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) renews its calls for an end to impunity for crimes against journalists and action to protect the safety of media professionals in the country. The first case involves a TV crew of local TV station attacked in front of police officers – who didn’t intervene – on 10 June 2016 in Berdyansk Zaporizhia region. Journalists went to cover the illegal seizure of a hotel building, when the unidentified men in a military uniform beaten up reporter Volodymyr Holovatiy, took away the camera and seized…

UK : Stop the Murdoch media takeover

The European and International Federations of Journalists are calling for action to stop the proposed merger of 21st Century Fox Inc and Sky plc, claiming it would ”undermine media plurality and be against the public interest”. The EFJ and IFJ joined forces with the National Union of Journalists in the UK and Ireland and the UK Trades Union Congress and the European TUC to welcome the decision of the European Commission to examine the bid and urged it to consider the impact on media diversity and plurality in the UK. In its submission to the investigation the IFJ called for action to…

LuxLeaks: journalist acquitted, whistleblowers get reduced sentences

The Luxembourg’s court of appeal convicted on Wednesday 15 March 2017 the two whistleblowers involved in the so-called LuxLeaks scandal. Antoine Deltour received a six-month suspended jail time as well as 1,500 euros fine; Raphael Halet was fined 1,000 euros. The journalist Edouard Perrin was acquitted. The general secretary of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), Ricardo Gutiérrez, denounced from Luxembourg a contradictory judgment: « The court decision leaves a bitter taste. For the first time, Deltour was recognised as ‘whistleblower’ and Edouard Perrin as a ‘responsible journalist’, as defended by the EFJ. However, Antoine Deltour’s and Raphaël Halet’s condemnation is scandalous. It was proved that they acted in…

UNHRC: 70 NGOs on the continuous deterioration of media freedom in Turkey

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has joined the oral statement delivered today (15/03/2017) by PEN International at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva to demand the immediate release all those held in prison for exercising their rights to freedom of opinion and expression and to end the prosecutions and detention of journalists simply on the basis of the content of their journalism or alleged affiliations The full statement says : JOINT ORAL STATEMENT ON THE DETERIORATION OF FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION AND MEDIA FREEDOM IN TURKEY UN Human Rights Council 34th Special Session Item 4: Human rights situations that…

Norwegian journalist denied entry in Russia

Barents Observer Editor Thomas Nilsen was on business trip with a delegation from the Danish Parliament´s Committee of Foreign Affairs, on 8 March 2017, when he learned that he can’t enter Russia, despite having a valid visa. When Nilsen arrived in Borisoglebsk, the cross-border point between Russia and Norway, he was told by FSB border guards that he is not allowed to enter due to security reasons. Barents Observer quoted Nilsen describing the incident: “I was told it was necessary to deny me access to Russia for the purpose of state security. The officers could not elaborate further and it was…

International support for the strike of workers at Il Sole 24 Ore newspaper

The European and International Federation of Journalists (EFJ-IFJ) have backed calls by striking workers at one of Italy’s top financial newspapers for the editor to resign. The EFJ-IFJ joined its affiliate, the Federazione Nazionale della Stampa Italiana (FNSI), in supporting the stoppage by Il Sole 24 Ore workers which started today. The strike, backed in a vote on Friday by 90% of union members, is demanding the resignation of the paper’s editor, Roberto Napoletano, following a police raid on the paper’s headquarters and claims senior managers, including Napoletano, issued false statements about the company’s position. Reports said that Napoletano and two former…

Belarus: police interfere with journalists work during protests

UPDATE (14.03.2017): The Belarusian Association of Journalists protests detentions of 18 journalists and obstruction of their professional activities by law enforcement forces. The BAJ believes that the court ruling on March 13, where journalists Halina Abakunchyk and K. Bakhvalava were found administratively liable, is unlawful and illegitimate. On March 12, protests were planned in three Belarusian cities – Babruysk, Orsha and Rahachou due to the unemployment tax, which will force people to pay approximately $200 if they are unemployed for more than six months per year. Law enforcement agencies unfolded a large-scale operation to prevent journalists from covering the events. The…

Apply now to the workshop “Reporting Refugees, Migrants, Ethnicity” – Croatia, 26-27 May

In the framework of the project “Media Against Hate”, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) will organise together with the Croatian Journalists’ Association (CJA) a workshop on “Reporting Refugees, Migrants, Ethnicity” on 26-27 May 2017 in Zagreb, Croatia. The training will gather 25 journalists from the European Union reporting topics concerning refugees, migrants and ethnicity. The training aims to exchange best practices and guidelines promoting ethical journalism on these issues. A regional outlook will also focus on challenges for hate speech in Croatia. Please find enclosed the invitation letter with all the practical details as well as the draft programme.…

Regional Platform call for termination of attacks against Macedonian journalists

Regional Platform for Advocating Media Freedom and Journalists’ Safety wants to express its solidarity and support to journalists and media workers in Macedonia faced with constant pressures, including physical attacks and death threats. We are especially concerned by the fact that coordinated attacks involve public officers and representatives of state institutions. In last four years in Macedonia there were 44 attacks against journalists, 19 of them last year. “The European Court for Human Rights in Strasbourg confirmed violations of freedom of expression in Macedonia, but local institutions did not punish any of attackers against journalists”, says Naser Selmani, president of…

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