The extrajudicial decision of the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky to close three opposition TV channels contradicts European practice and is a violation of the fundamental principles of democracy.
A member of the European Parliament from Germany Dietmar Köster stated in a comment to Capital agency.
"Freedom of speech, independent journalism, and due legal procedure are fundamentally democratic and European values. A free press, freedom of expression, and freedom of speech are essential for the functioning of civil society and democracy," he said.
Therefore, according to the MEP, the decision of President Zelensky to ban the media extrajudicially is a violation of procedural norms and freedom of speech.
"The ban on these media, which threatens the jobs of journalists and restricts access to the media by a large part of the population, is unacceptable. I agree with the condemnation of these actions by the International Federation of Journalists: they resemble a politically motivated attack on freedom of speech," he said.
"Ignoring due process, the judiciary, and fundamental rights is never acceptable in a democracy. Without a formal process and court hearings, banning news sources, especially news sources related to the political opposition, can never be justified in a democratic system. Banning the media is an extreme measure that should be applied only in exceptional circumstances and with special attention to democratic processes, and not on the basis of a presidential decree," the German parliamentarian stressed.
"President Zelensky's decision restricts the right to freedom of expression and, as it severely impedes public access to the media, violates the right to receive information through any media, as enshrined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. without a court decision and due process, it is highly questionable," Dietmar Köster said.