Editor attacked, threatened

MARCH 10, 2006

Irina Ovsy, Sotsialisticheskaya Kharkovshchina

Two unidentified men attacked Ovsy, editor of Sotsialisticheskaya Kharkovshchina, weekly newspaper of the For Union political coalition, at the entrance to her apartment building, according to local press reports. Ovsy was leaving for work at around 10 a.m. when the assailants pushed her against a wall, told her to stop publishing the newspaper, and threatened to hurt the editor and her family.

Ovsy filed a complaint with Dzerjinsky district police in Kharkov, according to local press reports. Vitalina Masterova, head of the For Union press department, told CPJ that police promised to investigate.

Sotsialisticheskaya Kharkovshina reported that Osvy didn’t know the attackers but suspected that they were hired by opponents of the For Union political bloc. The editor said that she had received anonymous threats by phone and e-mail before the attack. Vadim Goncharov, the head of local For Union branch, told reporters that Ovsy would take a leave.

Vladimir Goshovsky, For Union leader and the head of Social Ukraine party, sent a formal request for help from the Kharkov region’s Interior Affairs Department on March 13, according to press reports.