02 Aug 2019 Lvl. 2
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Alert created on: 02 Aug 2019 Ukraine

Brutal Attack on the Ukrainian National News Agency Ukrinform

Source of threatNon-state
CategoryHarassment and intimidation of journalists
Partner EFJ/IFJ CPJ Index
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Partner EFJ/IFJ CPJ Index
On 30 July 2019, about a dozen men dressed in T-shirts with the inscription "Tradition and Order" broke into the press center of the Ukrinform news agency in Kyiv during a press conference of parliamentary candidates. They damaged the door to the press-hall and damaged the equipment and furniture. They pushed and hit Ukrinform staff members. They also threw eggs at, and poured water on, an independent candidate from the town of Pokrovsk in eastern Ukraine, Andrey Aksyonov, accusing him of being close to the Kremlin authorities. The other candidate, Serhiy Korshukov, from the European Solidarity party, was not attacked. The two candidates had been speaking about alleged vote-rigging in the recent parliamentary elections. Two media workers of Ukrinform’s technical department and the head of the press center were injured. The whole event was broadcast live on the Ukrinform Youtube channel. Two attackers were taken to the police department for a questioning. Kiev police started a criminal investigation into the incident. The organisation "Tradition and Order" is classified as "radical nationalist" by Human Rights Watch. It is known for its attacks on Ukrainian Roma, LGBT persons and human rights activists.
Follow-ups
02 Aug 2019
New OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media condemns attack on press center of Ukrinform news agency and calls on the authorities to fully investigate the incident.
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