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08.04.2004

Ivan Chizh, the head of the State committee of information:

   

The increase of the activity of journalists in the protection of their rights and freedoms is caused not only by a number of tragic events, but also by the necessity of changing the attitude to journalism as such. The Ukrainian journalism extremely needs the positive image, because today, one must recognize, this image is rather negative. The Ukrainian journalistic corporation splits into different, sometimes openly antagonistic, camps.

The intensive attention to the freedom of speech in Ukraine on the side of international organizations, and not only journalistic ones, is praiseworthy. Yet, whether these observers did something really useful for the Ukrainian journalists? For some reasons, our colleagues from abroad persistently do not notice the positive moments, although, if to think logically, they must exist. And, fortunately, these positive moments do exist! The laws are adopted on the protection of the professional rights of journalists and of their life. Only journalists, along with law-enforcers, have the right to carry weapons. According to the operating laws, a state official may not refuse the access to information, which is not related to state secrets, to a worker of mass media. Besides, the pluralism of opinions exists in Ukraine. Maybe, this pluralism is even too developed, because if it had a merely declarative character, then we would not debate now on the ways of protecting the informational space of Ukraine from the appreciable foreign influence. And the situation in this sphere is extremely dangerous: the almost complete commercialization of the informational space resulted in the rapid development of the industry of popular, but very far from the interests of Ukraine and the Ukrainian nation, mass media.

 («Narodna spravedlivist», No. 22, June 2003)

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