Media Trade Union calls on MIA to revoke unlawful journalist accreditation rules


The Media Trade Union is appalled by the procedure for accreditation of journalists for the first press conference to be given by the (new) Minister of Internal Affairs Vasyl Tsushko.
On 12 March 2007 the MIA Press Centre notified journalists via its official website that they would be able to attend the Minister’s press conference only on the basis of an official request from their management. In addition, accreditation closes a day before the event.
“The introduction of such rules is in violation of citizens’ rights to free access to information. It also obstructs journalists from carrying out their professional duties, limiting their right of access to information. This means that the MIA Public Relations Centre is in contravention of Article 26 of the Law “On Printed Mass Communication Media (the Press)”, members of the Media Trade Union assert.
For example, this means that freelance journalists who cover the activities of the law enforcement agencies will not be allowed to attend Mr Tsushko’s press conference. They add that this will also restrict the rights of those journalists employed in an editorial office but whose bosses are away for some reason and physically unable to prepare the relevant document.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs via its press service is offering no explanation at all for such a strict filtering of journalists. “The Media Trade Union considers such accreditation to be an obstruction of the work of Kyiv journalists”, Mykhailyna Skoryk, the head of the Kyiv Independent Media Trade Union insists.
In an official letter to the Minister of Internal Affairs Vasyl Tsushko, the Media Trade Union is demanding that an end be put to obstructions on the work of journalists and is calling on the MIA to change the rules for accreditation, since these do not comply with current legislation. They also ask that the public be informed who introduced the unlawful journalist accreditation rules and why.

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