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Appeal by journalist over Deputy’s assault rejected


The Pechersky District Court in Kyiv has dismissed an appeal by STB journalist Olha Chervakova against the refusal by the Prosecutor of the Pechersky District of Kyiv to initiate a criminal investigation against National Deputy Oleksandr Tkachenko.

The arguments presented by Ms Chervakova’s lawyer touched on two issues: the first was that the investigator had not questioned all witnesses, this being immediately refuted by the Judge. The second concerned the elements of the crime under Article 171 of the Criminal Code (obstruction of journalists’ lawful professional activities” in the actions of Mr Tkachenko.

According to Ms Chervakova, this point was not addressed by the court and the judgment states only that all witnesses were questioned.  She noted also that from the judgment it is clear that Mr Tkachenko did not even manage to get to the Prosecutor’s Office in order to give evidence.

Her lawyer is preparing an appeal to the Kyiv City Court.

As reported here, on 1 September.  STB Special Correspondent Olha Chervakova attempted to find out from Mr Tkachenko, a National Deputy from the Communist Party,  why he had called the day before for journalists to not be allowed into the parliamentary buffet. He did not answer, just first hit out at the microphone, and then grabbed it and took it upstairs to the third floor where he threw it down and it fell into the basement.  All of this was recorded on video.

Journalist colleagues came out in support of Ms Chervakova, with the Kyiv Independent Media Trade Union calling on the Prosecutor General to ensure that a criminal investigation was launched, while the Journalist Ethics Committee examined the video footage and found nothing unprofessional in Chervakova’s behaviour.

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