Media Union calls for resumption of broadcasting of blocked Kharkiv TV companies
The Independent Media Union of Ukraine is concerned by the actions of the Kharkiv authorities under the leadership of Mayor Gennady Kernes which have renewed pressure on local media outlets. In a statement just issued, the Union writes that three TV companies ATN, Fora and ATVC last week stopped broadcasting due to the arbitrary decisions of the authorities.
The first to be blocked was ATN, which according to surveys is watched by half of the city’s resident’s.
“There are grounds for believing that this media outlet was closed because of Mayor Gennady Kernes’ dissatisfaction since the latter has on a number of occasions publicly expressed indignation over criticism of his activities in the programmes of the TV companies.
The Independent Media Union of Ukraine considers the blocking of the Kharkiv media outlets to be a flagrant attack on freedom of speech in order to deprive Kharkiv residents of a critical view of the activities of the authorities.”
The Union endorses the stand taken by the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union in calling for the reinstatement of the TV channels ATN, Fora and ATVC, after which issues in dispute can be resolved.