Another journalist beaten


Valeriy Vorotnik, a journalist of the Cherkassy independent public and political newspaper ’Antenna’, came to see how emergency works were done at the town canalization collector. Some time before a serious ecologically dangerous breakthrough occurred there, because of which the emergency state was ordered in Cherkassy. When the journalist tried to begin his professional activities, two strangers came up to him and introduced themselves as ’security officers’. They impeded the journalist to work, dragged him out of the territory involved, beat him and damaged his digital photographic camera. The strangers motivated their actions by the victim did not pass the accreditation at the gigantic town chemical enterprise ’AZOT’. In spite of the fact that the place of the breakthrough is situated outside the enterprise, in the middle of a street, the attackers accused the journalist of the alleged penetration to a secret guarded territory.

As it became known, the territory of the collector belongs namely to the mentioned chemical enterprise, which, possibly, is responsible for the ecological accident. As the result of this accident industrial waste and faeces flowed directly to the Dnieper, and the town was left without drinking water during the New Year festivities for several days.

The persons, who violated the rights of the journalist, appeared to be guards from ’AZOT’ and not state security officers, as they told. Their presence at the accident site testifies that the administration of the chemical enterprise wanted to conceal the reasons of the breakthrough, which endangered not only the inhabitants of Cherkassy, but also the dwellers of the entire middle of the Dnieper region. The journalist violated neither the boundaries of the guarded territory nor ignored the demands of any prohibiting signs, which, by the way, were absent. He fulfilled his usual professional duties on the territory belonging to the town.

Valeriy Vorotnik turned to the prosecutor’s office with the demand to start the criminal case immediately according to Article 171 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine ’Impeding permitted activities of journalist’.

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