On October 4, the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine hosted a round table «The role of prosecutors in cases of crimes against journalists». It discussed the role of such prosecutors, presented a special edition of UNESCO for them, and also reported that by September 29, 285 criminal proceedings had been opened in Ukraine on the facts of offenses against journalists.

This was written in his Facebook page by the head of the NUJU SergeyTomilenko.

The event was attended by representatives of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Kyiv Regional Prosecutor’s Office, judges, journalists, media experts and media lawyers. The round table was organized by the NUJU together with the UNESCO central headquarters in Paris and the Office of the Prosecutor General.

Statistics of crimes against media workers were collected by the Office of the Prosecutor General. According to him, 169 cases are still under pre-trial investigation. Every fifth criminal case involving violations against journalists is investigated for three years or longer, and one out of ten cases is referred to the court.

The Department assured that since the beginning of the year, the effectiveness of investigations of crimes committed against journalists has increased in Ukraine. This was stated by the head of the Department of Criminal Law Policy and Investment Protection of the Prosecutor General’s Office Alexey Bonyuk.

«According to data from regional prosecutor’s offices, the number of suspicions and the number of cases of sending criminal proceedings related to crimes against journalists to the court increased from 20 to 50%,» said Bonyuk.

During the meeting, there was a presentation of a special edition of UNESCO — «Recommendations for prosecutors in cases of crimes against journalists». UNESCO hopes that the publication will become a useful tool for Ukrainian prosecutors not only to investigate murders of journalists and attacks on them, but also to prevent such crimes.

The meeting participants discussed the investigation of obstruction of journalistic activity, the role of prosecutor’s offices in crimes against journalists, mechanisms and implementation of international experience in protecting the rights of journalists.

Speakers of the round table put forward proposals to improve the investigation of crimes against journalists.  

SergeiTomilenko commented to Strana on the problem of impunity for crimes against journalists.

«Police officers, prosecutors, judges, and deputies should protect journalists. But in practice, we often see that each individual agency nods to another and looks for excuses for impunity for crimes against journalists. Therefore, journalists should be solidary and bring together the authorities and all law enforcement agencies on a single platform, so that investigations of crimes are prompt and complete, and punishments for those who attacked journalists are inevitable and weighty,» the head of the National Union of Jornalists of Ukraine said.

Source: A country

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