Lawyers’ Union of Ukraine: Committee on inspection of 112 Ukraine, NewsOne, ZIK has conflict of interests

Source : 112 Ukraine

It is noted that the representatives of the authority in Ukraine should “certainly stick to the Main Law of Ukraine and norms of the international law” concerning all issues of the freedom of speech
16:13, 23 October 2019

112 Agency

The members of the temporary investigation committee (TIC) on inspection of112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZIK TV channels have the conflict of interests as the statement of Union of Lawyers of Ukraine (ULU) reported toward the violation of the right of the citizens of Ukraine for information.

The ULU statement headed by former prosecutor general of Ukraine, vice-president of the International fund of lawyers of Ukraine, members of Supreme Justice Council Svyatoslav Piskun reported that the citizens of Ukraine constantly appeal to them concerning the violation of the right for information.

The ULU notes that the European Court of Human Rights drew attention in its decisions to the necessity of the constant development of the mechanisms of protection of the journalists and sources of information, provision of the freedom of speech.

Particularly, in the decisions made against Ukraine toward the violation of article 10 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, the ECHR recognized the facts of the existence of particular issues of the implementation of the convention standards in Ukraine.

That is why the ULU notes that these circumstances should be considered in the work of proper state bodies, particularly, newly created TIC. Moreover, the activity of the TIC may harm as some of its members have the interests’ conflict and the information about it spread on the internet.

Related: Media freedom in Ukraine is part of our constant work, - Federica Mogherini

“We urge the involved bodies of power, MPs of Ukraine to avoid any politicization of this issue, to be guided not by the corporate interests but only by the norms of the law, defending the rights of our fellow countrymen and taking care of the authority of Ukrainian state,” the Lawyers’ Union of Ukraine stated.

Besides, it is noted that the representatives of the authority in Ukraine should “certainly stick to the Main Law of Ukraine and norms of the international law” concerning all issues of the freedom of speech.

“Freedom of speech and free expression of views and belief are guaranteed by the Constitution of Ukraine,” the message said.

Particularly, Article 15 of the Constitution of Ukraine bans censorship. The laws of Ukraine “On information, “On TV and radio broadcasting”, “On state support of mass media and social protection of the journalists”, protect the rights of the citizens and journalists from the attacks on freedom for expression of views, receiving of information and persecution for expression of ideas.

Besides, the unmotivated interference of the state power bodies and officials as well as the owners in the sphere of the professional activity of TV and radio organization might be punished for the intentional obstruction of the illegal activity of the journalists.

“In the modern world the authority of the state mostly depends on the state of the freedom of speech and assurance of the independent activity of the journalists,” the ULU noted.

Related: In Ukraine freedom of the media is under threat, - Katerina Konecna MEP

It is added that Ukraine made pledges to strengthen the assurance of freedom of speech, including freedom of press and free access to the information.

 “Freedom of expression of views is the main right of the human enshrined in article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). It is the hard edges stone of the efficient management, stable development and strengthening of peace and security. The adopted by the Council of Europe Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms became the important international agreement in the sphere of human rights, which provide the efficient mechanism of protection of these rights,” the ULU stated.

Therefore, considering the practice of the ECHR, freedom of expression of views should be considered as the essential guarantee of the functioning of the democracy, main condition for the development of the democratic society and each person.

On September 26 the National council on questions of television and radio broadcasting deprived TV channel "112 Ukraine" of digital licenses for broadcasting.

The International Editorial Board of 112 Ukraine considered the decision of the regulator to be biased and politically motivated, which cause further pressure on the rights of the journalists and restriction of the freedom of speech in Ukraine.

112 Ukraine, ZIK and NewsOne TV channels ceased broadcasting for 30 minutes. The action, as the media workers said, is a response to the attempts of Ukrainian authorities to suppress freedom of speech.

Related: MEP Gill accuses Ukraine’s President Zelensky of pressing independent media

Earlier the regulatory committee of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine recommended to the parliament to create the temporary investigation committee (TIC) for investigation of the facts toward the meeting the requirements during the change of the owners of 112 Ukraine, NewsOne, ZIK TV Channels.

On October 17, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine has approved as a whole the draft resolution, which provides for the investigation of the activities of three TV channels - NewsOne, 112 Ukraine and ZIK. 278 MPs voted in favor of the decision.


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