“Article 19” to monitor the situation with environmental information in Ukraine
“Article 19”s Europe Programmes Officer Anoush Begoyan has visited Kyiv and Lviv to monitor one of the organizations projects in Ukraine. In Lviv Ms Begoyan met local journalists writing on environmental issues, as well as lawyers and experts from Lviv human rights organizations “Environment - People – Law” and the “Bureau of Environmental Investigations”.
The project which “Article 19” is involving the lawyers and journalists in envisages finding out from local journalists how easy it is for them to work with environmental topics and information in Lviv and what problems they encounter when gathering environmental information. Journalists of several Lviv newspapers and information agencies have given their professional assessment of working with civil servants.
The lawyers from human rights organizations discussed the legal aspects of access to environmental information in the Lviv region with Ms Begoyan. Both lawyers and human rights activists also shared their experience of gaining such data from state bodies and cited examples of several notorious cases involving the import of toxic wastes from Hungary into the region, the illegal reduction of reservation areas and problems with pesticides in the Carpathian Mountains.
Anoush explained that the project on monitoring freedom of speech and access to environmental information was planned for two years. It is presently at the stage of research and monitoring. After receiving specific results, and depending what these are, “Article 19” plans to carry out a range of training courses in Ukraine. The report on the results of the study is to be placed on the website of the organization and circulated among interested parties following its completion.
ARTICLE 19 is an international human rights organisation which defends and promotes freedom of expression and freedom of information all over the world.
See www.article19.org for more information about this important organization and its work