Yet another Party of the Regions MP demands compensation for libel


  Vitaly Zhuravsky, official author of the bill proposing to criminalize libel which aroused huge protest last year has now lodged a civil suit against the national TV channel “1 + 1”, and three other Internet publications.

He lodged the suit in a district court in the city of Zhytomyr demanding retraction and moral damages of 300 thousand UAH (a little less than 30 thousand EUR) from 1 + 1; the First Zhytomyr Information Portal; the Chief Editor of the Zhytomyr site and the Chief Editor of the website ARGUMENT.

He points to specific material in each, with titles like: “The fighter against libel knows what he’s frightened of: corruption, models, alcoholism”  The material alleges ownership of property which he denies; alcoholism; and. Judging from one of the titles cited, sycophantic behaviour. 

The number of defamation suits against the media has been rising over the last year following the disastrous abolition of an extremely progressive law from 2003 which had put an end to extortionate claims In moral compensation.

MPs voted on 2 October in favour of a resolution rescinding the libel law tabled by Party of the Regions MP Vitaly Zhuravsky which would have reintroduced criminal liability for libel / defamation.  The bill passed in its first reading on 18 September was supported by the ruling Party of the Regions in full, together with the other MPs of the ruling majority.  It aroused outrage and concentrated opposition from within Ukraine and calls to reject the move from European structures, international NGOs and others.

In fact, on the very same day that the law was rescinded, Party of the Regions MP Olena Bondarenko made it clear that they were backing off only temporarily.

Information about the suit from here

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