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Reporters Without Borders: Violence against media representatives in Ukraine on the rise

Reporters Without Borders (RSF), an international nongovernmental media organization, has warned that the violence against reporters in Ukraine is on the rise in the run-up to the presidential election.

“More often, the members of the media face violence in their line of work,” the statement by the organization published on Thursday in Berlin informs. “The oligarchs’ security services monitor the editorial offices’ activity, government officials try to block investigations that contain criticism,” the organization stated.

The document also criticizes the cases of Ukraine refusing entry to foreign reporters. “We realize that Ukraine finds itself in a very difficult situation due to the war in the country’s east,” Christian Mihr, head of the German RSF office, noted. He claimed that Russia “fuels this conflict through intentional disinformation in the media.”

On March 7, Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl condemned Ukraine for banning entry for Austria’s ORF TV channel journalist Christian Verschutz, blasting it as “an act of censorship”.

Later, Ukraine also refused entry to Russia-based journalist for the Italian state television broadcaster RAI, Marc Innaro, who planned to cover the presidential election and to interview incumbent Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko.

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