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14.05.2010

Media Union: Danger of Pro-Government Media Monopoly

   

The Independent Media Trade Union warns of the danger of State monopoly of media resources arising in Ukraine and does not exclude the possibility of journalist strikes.

The Head of the Independent Media Trade Union [IMTU], Roman Skrypin believes that Ukraine faces the threat of those in power gaining monopoly over the media and says that this is linked with the fact that the largest Ukrainian media resources are concentrated with businessmen close to the regime. He asserts that journalist material is censored at the instructions of the owners of media holdings. “There are possibly conversations with the media owners who have their interests under the present regime about how if you want to keep your business, and not only media interests, then you need to keep your mouths more shut regarding the actions of the present regime”, Mr Skrypin told the Ukrainian Service of Deutsche Welle.

Roman Skrypin does not agree that the topic of censorship in the media is at present convenient for the opposition and that journalists are being used in a political game. “You can’t say that journalists are being used by the opposition. It isn’t possible now to use journalists for such a purpose. Most of them are critical of both the regime and the opposition.”

He stressed that his trade union was informing the International Federation of Journalists and journalist human rights organizations in the EU and USA about all cases of pressure on journalists in Ukraine. He warns that if the situation does not change then journalists are ready to initiate parliamentary hearings on this issue and go on strike.

At the same time representatives of the regime reject the criticism regarding pressure on journalists. For example, the Deputy Head of the President’s Administration Anna Herman denies any interference in the work of the media.

From a report by Lilya Hryshko at http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,5570698,00.html

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