Russia: 13 journalists detained, more beaten during protests

The International and European Federation of Journalists (IFJ and EFJ) have today condemned the detention of at least 13 international and local journalists by Russian authorities during nationwide anti-corruption protests on 26 March. The demonstrations were not officially authorised in many Russian cities including Moscow and Saint-Petersburg which led to the detention of hundreds of people. Six journalists – among them two international correspondents – were detained in the capital Moscow, three in Saint-Petersburg and four more in other Russian cities. Reports added that the police also threatened and hit some reporters to prevent them from covering the demonstrations. Journalist…

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…

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…

Ukraine: about 100 jobs at risk following revocation of Radio Vesti’s licenses

The National Council for Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine revoked license of the Ukrainian broadcasting company “Radio Vesti” in Kharkiv city. The council also refused to extend the radio’s license in the capital, Kyiv. Radio Vesti, the largest national professional radio channel in the country, insists they sent the required documents on time in order to renew the licenses, which expired in February. Despite this, the National Council decided to revoke the licenses out of concerns that the ultimate beneficiary of the station was the former Minister of Revenue and Fees, Oleksandr Klymenko. Reports said that as a result,…

Russia: police raided home of journalist and human rights activist Zoya Svetova

The home of Russian journalist and human rights activist Zoya Svetova was raided by the police on February 28. According to her lawyer Anna Stavitskaya, ten investigators and two representatives of Federal Security Bureau (FSB) entered the property in the morning and searched her computer, personal papers and books. Stavitskaya believes that the raid is connected to Yukos (the oil company) case for alleged tax evasion. She explained that Russian law enforcement agencies think that the proceeds are used to fund organisations and individuals, among them Svetova. The Moscow Times columnist is known for her work on prisoners’ rights in…

Journalists might face up to 14 years in jail in the UK

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) back their British affiliate, the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), in its concerns over the proposals to update the Official Secrets Act in the United Kingdom. Due to the new way of defining espionage, including “obtaining sensitive information”, as well as “passing it on”, journalists, whom are simply working on their stories, can potentially face up to 14 years in prison by receiving some secret information. These proposals completely ignore the right of journalists to disclose information in the public interest and would also punish severely whistleblowers,…

Request for EU Support for Public Service Media in Balkan

On 1st and 2nd February, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU)  had a series of meetings with members of the European Parliament to discuss the urgency of supporting public service media and independent journalism in the accession countries. The lack of financial independence, outdated technologies as well as increasing political control, not only in Hungary and Poland but in all accession countries  affects the compatibility of public media outlets. Out of all Balkan countries only Serbia and Macedonia fully digitalised their production, although they still have most of their products in analogue format. The…

Closure of Swiss magazine L’Hebdo: Another blow to media pluralism

Ringier Axel Springer announced on January 23 their plans to close French-speaking magazine L’Hebdo.  Impressum,   the largest journalists’ organisation and the Trade Union of Media and Communications Syndicom  are both deeply concerned about the potential negative impact of the decision on media pluralism, investigative journalism and the future of the media in French-speaking Switzerland. The EFJ expressed its solidarity with their Swiss affiliates and offer full support. A petition was also launched and supported by both EFJ affliates  to demand alternative financial plans to continue or return the title. @EFJEUROPE @lhebdo @IFJGlobal signez la pétition pour @lhebdo https://t.co/zhle3ihJtF — syndicom…

Republika Srpska President’s office limits access for selected media

The European Federation of Journalists backs the Bosnia-Herzegovina Journalists Association (BHJA) in condemning the discriminatory actions by Republika Srpska (RS) President Milorad Dodik against selected media. On January 18 a news crew from N1 Television was denied access to a press conference in Banjaluka on the grounds that they didn’t have accreditation to enter the venue. The TV channel was also removed from the mailing list of the President’s office, which meant no further access to official newsletters or accreditation information that are necessary for the news coverage. BHJA  called these actions unreasonable discrimination against the well-known critical media outlet.…

Verbal attacks against Macedonian journalists

The European Federation of Journalists backs Association of Journalists of Macedonia (AJM) in condemning verbal abuses by the authorities against journalists. Such actions are damaging for the freedom of expression and are limiting the public access to the information. One of the major political parties in Macedonia VMRO-DPMNE accused Fondation Open Society Macedonia for corrupting the journalists and urged to “clean” the “media of Soros”. AJM calls these claims “a pure spin of the government” and finds it very dangerous to call for violence against journalists, as such comments might have negative consequences in the future. The full announcement by…

Calling Turkish authorities to stop criminalising journalists

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is backing the statement sent by its affiliates TGS, TGC and DISK Basin-Is calling the Turkish authorities to stop the criminalisation of journalists and media workers in Turkey. On 25/12/2016, the following journalists and media workers Tunca Öğreten (freelance), Mahir Kanaat (accountant for BirGün daily), Ömer Celik (DIHABER news director), Metin Yoksa (DIHABER correspondent) and Eray Saygin have been detained by police and no explanation has been provided for these arrests. “You cannot hide the truth by jailing journalists”, said Journalists Union of Turkey (TGS) in a statement. DISK-Basin Is underlines the fact that…

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