Europe & Central Asia


Alerts   |   Armenia


New York, December 30, 2002—Tigran Nagdalian, the 36-year-old head of the state-owned Armenian Public Television, was shot in the head as he was leaving his parents home in Armenia's capital, Yerevan, on Saturday, December 28. The journalist was rushed to a hospital, where he died during emergency surgery, according to press reports.
December 30, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Russia

CPJ condemns journalist's imprisonment on anniversary of verdict

New York, December 24, 2002—Tomorrow marks the one-year anniversary of Russian military journalist Grigory Pasko's four-year prison sentence.

"The imprisonment of Grigory Pasko one year ago was a politicized effort by military and security officials to silence him for writing articles about environmental dangers that jeopardized the health of the Russian people," said Ann Cooper, executive director of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). "Pasko's continued imprisonment is an injustice that confirms the inability of the Russian judiciary to protect journalists' fundamental rights in politically sensitive cases."
December 24, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Russia

CPJ welcomes President Putin's decision to veto controversial amendments

New York, November 25, 2002
—The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) welcomes Russian president Vladimir Putin's decision today to veto restrictive amendments to the Law on the Struggle with Terrorism and the Law on Mass Media that were passed by Parliament earlier this month.

Putin announced his decision during a meeting with media chiefs. He also asked both houses of the Russian Parliament to form a commission to redraft the amendments.

November 25, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Russia

Azerbaijani journalist detained in Moscow

New York, November 25, 2002—The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is alarmed that Irada Huseynova, a correspondent with the Azerbaijani weekly Bakinsky Bulvar who currently works for the Moscow-based Center for Journalism in Extreme Situations (CJES), was detained today in Moscow and could be extradited.

CJES director Oleg Panfilov told CPJ that Moscow police arrived at CJES offices and detained Huseynova at the request of Azerbaijan's Prosecutor General's Office. The journalist faces extradition to Azerbaijan, where she was facing possible jail time for criminal defamation charges.

November 25, 2002 12:00 PM ET


Alerts   |   Belarus

Body of Ukrainian journalist found

New York, November 19, 2002—A body suspected to be that of Mykhailo Kolomyets, director of Ukrainski Novyny news agency, was found on October 30 hanging from a tree in a forest in northwestern Belarus, near the city of Maladzechna, said a news report that Ukrainski Novyny published today.

Kolomyets' colleagues at the news agency said that he did not show up for work on October 21, and that they reported him missing to law enforcement authorities a week later. According to Ukrainian police, the journalist had traveled to neighboring Belarus on October 22, where he telephoned a friend, Lyubov Ruban, who said that Kolomyets informed her that he was planning to commit suicide.
November 19, 2002 12:00 PM ET


Alerts   |   Italy

Former prime minister convicted for ordering journalist murdered

New York, November 19, 2002—An appeals court in the central Italian city of Perugia announced this week that it had convicted former prime minister Giulio Andreotti, 83, and sentenced him to 24 years in prison for ordering the murder of muckraking journalist Mino Pecorelli in 1979.

Pecorelli, who was preparing to publish compromising information about Andreotti, was gunned down on March 20, 1979, while sitting in his car in central Rome. A gunman using a pistol fitted with a silencer shot him once in the head and three times in the back.
November 19, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Letters   |   Russia

CPJ urges Putin not to sign amendments

Your Excellency: The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is extremely concerned about amendments to the Law on the Struggle with Terrorism and the Law on Mass Media that were recently passed by the Parliament and now await your final approval.

November 14, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Tajikistan

Three journalists forced into military service

New York, November 8, 2002
—Three journalists in Tajikistan have been conscripted into military service in retaliation for producing a talk show that criticized local military officials, according to local and international reports.

The program, which aired on October 24 and 27, was produced by journalists from the local, independent television stations SM-1 and TRK-Asia in the northern city of Khujand and reported that the military uses gangs to forcibly recruit young men into military service. During the show, senior military officer Faziliddin Domonov denied the use of such aggressive tactics, the New York­based Eurasianet Web site reported.

November 8, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Kazakhstan

Independent journalist detained

New York, October 29, 2002—CPJ is deeply concerned that Sergei Duvanov, a prominent 49-year-old journalist known for his criticism of Kazakh authorities, was arrested on October 27 on suspicion of raping a minor.

The journalist, who remains in detention, has been officially charged, the opposition party Democratic Choice of Kazakhstan reported today.

Duvanov has denied the charges, saying the authorities "decided to use the dirtiest, most deceitful means to discredit me in from of the eyes of my Western order to prevent me from writing articles which aren't pleasing for those who sit in power," The Associated Press reported.
October 29, 2002 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Russia

Media face government restriction and pressure on coverage of hostage standoff

New York, October 25, 2002—The hostage standoff in central Moscow has highlighted growing restrictions on the Russian media, including this week's passage of legislation banning "propaganda of terrorism" in mass media. Although the legislation has not become law, the government is already using it to censor coverage of the hostage crisis.

A large group of heavily armed Chechen rebels seized some 700 people in a Moscow theater on October 23, demanding that Russian troops pull out of the war-torn region of Chechnya in southern Russia.
October 25, 2002 12:00 PM ET



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