Freedom House Commends Ukraine on Election, Raises Concerns over Targeting of Journalists | Freedom House

Freedom House Commends Ukraine on Election, Raises Concerns over Targeting of Journalists

Washington

Following Sunday's successful presidential election in Ukraine and in response to growing violence and repression targeting journalists there, including the recent kidnappings of Vyacheslav Bondarenko and Maksym Osovskiy in the Luhansk region and Milana Omelchuk in the Donetsk region, Freedom House issued the following statement:

"Freedom House joins those congratulating the people of Ukraine on successfully and bravely conducting a nationwide election Sunday that has produced a legitimately elected new president," said David Kramer, president of Freedom House. "At the same time as the world celebrates Ukraine's historic democratic elections, we note the ongoing and alarming increase in kidnappings, disappearances, and other forms of violence against journalists. With violence and disorder in Ukraine's east ongoing, authorities need to redouble efforts to ensure journalists' safety, as neither the government nor separatist forces are facilitating or protecting their vital work. The 42 kidnappings or enforced disappearances that we have identified since March – mostly at the hands of violent separatist factions – are a dark stain on Ukraine's tremendous progress over the past few months. They underscore the need for renewed efforts to protect journalists and investigate violations against them. Vyacheslav, Maksym, and Milana should be released immediately, their kidnappings and those of other journalists investigated without delay, and the perpetrators brought to justice."

Ukraine is rated Partly Free in Freedom in the World 2014, Not Free in Freedom of the Press 2014, and Free in Freedom on the Net 2013.

To learn more about Ukraine, visit:
Ukraine Media Watch
Testimony: Ukraine: Countering Russian Intervention and Supporting a Democratic State
Freedom in the World 2014: Ukraine
Nations in Transit 2013: Ukraine
Freedom of the Press 2013: Ukraine
Freedom on the Net 2013: Ukraine

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Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

Join us on Facebook and Twitter (freedomhouse). Stay up to date with Freedom House’s latest news and events by signing up for our newsletter.