New York, April 9, 2014–The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned by reports that Ukrainian border guards have denied entry to the country to several Russian journalists over the past few days. Reports say that journalists with the newly reshuffled RIA Novosti news agency, TV channels Rossiya and Russia Today, the business daily Kommersant, and Forbes-Russia magazine have all been turned down at the border.
“We call on Ukrainian authorities to ensure that all journalists, foreign and domestic, are able to report freely and without obstruction on the unfolding events in Ukraine,” CPJ Europe and Central Asia Program Coordinator Nina Ognianova said. “Democratic governments have no business barring journalists from working based on nationality. Restricting media access only increases suspicion and misunderstanding.”
Ukrainian officers alleged the journalists did not have enough cash to support their trip; did not justify the purpose of their visit; or reported for Russian media outlets, news reports said. The journalists had tried to enter the country in order to report on the escalating tensions in eastern Ukraine.