112 Ukraine TV Channel building was shelled from a grenade launcher at 3:40 a.m on July 13. Police who arrived at the site, qualifies the incident as an act of terrorism.
The attack is unfortunately not the first one for Ukrainian media, and for once we can only hope that those responsible will be found.
Here are some responses to the accident.
Director General 112 Ukraine TV Channel Yegor Benkendorf
Director General of 112 Ukraine TV Channel Yegor Benkendorf urged Ukrainian authorities to immediately condemn these actions against the channel and against the audience. He stressed that 112 Ukraine TV Channel, 112.ua and 112.international continue being on the air and online.
“The employees of 112 Channel are all safe and sound and that’s all that matters.
I urge the Office of the President of Ukraine, the Cabinet, personally the Minister of Internal Affairs, the Prosecutor General, and the Security Service of Ukraine to immediately condemn criminal actions against 112 Ukraine TV Channel. You have to clearly and decisively state: “No one is allowed to use force against media in Ukraine.” The entire civilized world is waiting for you to state, including the embassies of the G7 countries, to which we have already referred to the support.
I appeal to the employees of 112 Ukraine TV channel, 112.ua, and 112.international news portals. Dear colleagues, we will do everything possible to make you feel safe. We will provide extra security for the office building and will make every effort to find those responsible for today's crime.
I appeal to everyone who sent words of support. Thank you. We appreciate and remember every kindness.
I appeal to the audience. We are staying. We are on air and online.
We will broadcast on air and in the internet about the progress of investigation,” Benkendorf writes.
Owner of 112 Ukraine TV Channel Taras Kozak
Owner of the channel Taras Kozak stated shelling of 112 Ukraine TV Channel from a grenade launcher was another threat to independent media in Ukraine.
“But I have a question for Interior Ministry and Security Service – what is next? What if another attempt is successful? Who, for example, reacted to threats of massacre of the TV channel’s employees by Dmytro Yarosh in social media who called on, I quote, those concerned about violations of human rights and freedom of speech to shut up?
I urge once again law enforcement agencies to do their job and start pursuing offenders, not journalists,” Kozak writes.
The National Union of Journalists of Ukraine
The National Union of Journalists of Ukraine appealed to the Security Service of Ukraine and other law-enforcement agencies to conduct an effective investigation. Moreover, the National Union of Journalists noted that systematic impunity for the recent attacks on journalists and media provokes new ones.
“The terrorist attack. 112 Ukraine TV Channel building was shelled from a grenade launcher last night. No matter how tense the electoral campaign is a war against journalists and media is the war against Ukraine. Whoever organized the terrorist attack must be adequately punished!” the NUJU stated.
“At the same time, the National Union of Journalists notes that systemic impunity for the recent attacks on journalists and media produces new ones. The cases of arson of Inter TV Channel in September 2016, blocking offices of national and regional media, including fires in editorial offices in Dnipro region – all this caused today’s act of terrorism,” Serhiy Tomilenko, the head of the NUJU noted.
Team of 112 Ukraine TV Channel
The channel’s team appealed to the President and law enforcers to condemn the use of force and threats against journalists, condemn the terrorist attack against 112 Ukraine TV Channel and provide security for its employees.
“The atmosphere of fear very negatively affects the members of the channel’s team. We are being threatened of assaults. Far-rights threaten coming under the office as they did when they came to Inter and NewsOne TV channels.
During this week we have not seen the law enforcers neither condemnation of radicals or investigation of the threats.
As a result, the inaction of authorities led to shelling of 112 TV Channel from a grenade launcher. And it is not just a violation of freedom of speech. It is terrorism in the center of Ukraine.
We urge the President, the government, and law enforcement bodies in particular:
- to condemn the use of force and threats against journalists;
- to condemn the act of terrorism against 112 TV Channel.
And most importantly. We demand to provide security for employees of 112 TV Channel’s and 112.ua portal,” the team states.
Former leader of Right Sector Dmytro Yarosh
Dmytro Yarosh declared he supported violence, and suggested staff of 112 TV Channel to quit, as well as “shut up those concerned about violation of the human rights and freedom of speech.”
“There will be neither Molotov cocktails or fireworks.
I advise those who work for enemy channels to quit right now as health and life are more important then 30 pennies you get from Putin and his associates in Ukraine.
I suggest everyone who is concerned of the violation of the human rights and freedom of speech should shut up as we are at war.
P.S. In fact, I mind excessive violence. But I would rather support one if there is no other option,” Yarosh posted.
The Security Service of Ukraine
The Security Service (SBU) announced that criminal proceedings over the shelling were initiated. SBU officers will conduct pre-trial investigation.
“Currently, the police, the Security Service of Ukraine and other law enforcement agencies are holding immediate investigative actions and search operation,” SBU press service informs.
The National Police of Ukraine
The National Police officers reacted promptly to report and were the first to arrive to 112 Ukraine TV Channel building. The accident was qualified as a terrorist attack.
A fired-out grenade launcher covering was found near the TV channel’s building, and ‘Siren’ special operation was launched to detect and capture shooters.
At the time of writing of this material there had not been any response neither from the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, or from the Office of the President of Ukraine, or from the Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, or from the Ministry of Information Policy of Ukraine.