112 Ukraine TV channel expresses its deep concern over the information about intentions of Head of Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Bohdan to put the channel under control and organize the seizure of the channel by the forces of the Security Service of Ukraine.
The media believe that Andriy Bohdan aims to gain control over the top-rated news channel of the country by arresting it and transferring to the Asset Recovery and Management Agency (ARMA).
In case of arrest, the control over the channel will be passed to ARMA, which could transfer this property under the management of a private company, which would win the corresponding tender. Thus, a lawful owner will lose the channel and the viewer will lose the right to receive alternative information.
The lawyers of the channel state the described plan is illegal and its realization will mean the absence of rule of law in Ukraine and beginning of regime of totalitarianism and dictatorship in the country.
Ukrainian authorities still have not reacted to the shelling of the building of TV channel with a grenade launcher, in which no one was injured, but it was a narrow escape. In addition, sometime after the shelling, the current Ukrainian MP called to shell the TV channel building again with an anti-tank missile, which also did not receive any assessment either from the authorities or from law enforcement agencies.
In addition, according to a number of news agencies, Andriy Bohdan met with the judges, who consider the case, the decision on which the channel could de facto go off the air. At the same time, the National Council of Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine assigned a number of inspections of channel broadcasting, which could evidence an aimed campaign of pressuring the broadcaster and using legal loopholes to close down the channel.
We view such position of Zelensky President’s Office as outrageous.
112 Ukraine channel addresses the Council of Europe, European Parliament and International Editorial Council with the call to ensure the protection of freedom of speech in Ukraine.
We demand the authorities stop bringing pressure upon the 112 Ukraine TV channel. Millions of Ukrainian citizens made their choice and watch the channel.
Dear President Zelensky, your predecessors in position who were fighting against ideological dissension got their political punishment for their policy. Do not retrace the same path/ Fight against poverty, not against the undesired TV channels.
Defend freedom of speech.