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28.05.2007

When the charges are as unclear as who made them

   

TV Channel 5 reported on Monday that the press service of Sviatoslav Piskun had read its journalists a statement accusing them of biased coverage of the work of the Prosecutor General.

Sviatoslav Piskun was dismissed from his position as Prosecutor General last Thursday by a Presidential Decree, which Mr Piskun claims was revoked by a court.

The statement today reads: “Journalists from Channel 5 have recently been subjective and biased in their coverage of events and facts pertaining to the work of the Prosecutor General’s Office and to the Prosecutor General Sviatoslav Piskun in particular”.

The Press Service links Channel 5’s position with a criminal investigation into the smuggling of drugs across the borders of Germany, Poland and Ukraine, in relation to “2 Ukrainian nationals who work for Channel 5”. It claims that the investigation was launched by the law enforcement agencies in Poland and is being investigated also by the Kyiv prosecutor’s office.

The statement, which is emphatic in emphasizing that the Prosecutor General is Mr Piskun, calls on Channel 5 to adhere to standards of journalist ethics and refrain from psychological pressure on the prosecutor’s office.

Channel 5 on the other hand has stated that Volodymyr Aryev, producer of “Zakryta zona” [“Closed zone”] is planning to approach the acting Prosecutor General Viktor Shemchuk. He will be asking him to hold an enquiry and give a legal assessment of the actions of employees of the Prosecutor General’s Office in circulating untruthful information about him and the channel. The journalist denies the accusations of smuggling drugs and links the criticism with his professional activities. “I consider this to be the use by officials of the Prosecutor General’s office of information or data for their own personal ends, to put pressure on journalists”, Mr Aryev stated.

Based on material from www.telekritika.kiev.ua

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