Europe & Central Asia


Alerts   |   Georgia

Supreme Court threatens independent TV station for exposing corruption

New York, March 21, 2003— The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is concerned that the Georgian Supreme Court has published a statement requesting that the prosecutor general conduct a criminal inquiry into "60 Minutes," a biweekly investigative news program on the independent, Tbilisi-based television station Rustavi 2 in retaliation for its reporting on widespread corruption in the judiciary and police.
March 21, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Russia

Local television journalist brutally attacked

New York, March 19, 2003- The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) condemns yesterday's violent attack on Olga Kobzeva, a journalist with GTRK Don-TR television, a local branch of the All-Russian State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company, in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don.

According to Russian sources, an unknown assailant wielding a broken bottle slashed the journalist's face on Tuesday evening, March 18, near her home when she was returning from work. None of her personal items were taken, the Russian information agency RIA Novosti reported.
March 19, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Russia

Local journalist violently attacked

New York, March 17, 2003—The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) condemns the violent attack against Aleksandr Krutov, a journalist with the independent weekly newspaper Bogatei in the city of Saratov, in southern Russia.

According to Russian news reports, three unknown assailants attacked the journalist on the evening of Thursday, March 13, outside his home. One of the attackers hit Krutov in the head, knocking him to the ground, and the three beat him. The perpetrators fled the scene after snatching Krutov's briefcase.
March 17, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Serbia

Government imposes media restrictions following premier's assassination

New York, March 13, 2003—The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is concerned that under the state of emergency declared in Serbia on Wednesday, March 12, following the assassination that day of Serbian prime minister Zoran Djindjic, restrictions have been placed on the media.

Natasa Micic, president of the Serbian National Assembly and currently acting president of Serbia, declared a state of emergency yesterday afternoon after Djindjic was fatally shot by a sniper in the center of Serbia's capital, Belgrade.
March 13, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Kazakhstan

Court upholds journalist's prison sentence

New York, March 11, 2003—The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is disappointed that today's decision by Kazakhstan's Almaty Regional Court in the city of Taldykorgan, north of Almaty, upheld the prison sentence of prominent independent journalist Sergei Duvanov.

On January 28, Almaty's Karasaisky District Court sentenced Duvanov to three-and-a-half years in prison for allegedly raping a minor. In addition, today's ruling changed the criminal code article under which Duvanov was convicted from rape (Article 120, part 1) to deliberate rape of a minor (Article 120, part 2)—a much more serious offense under Kazakh law, Yevgeny Zhovtis, a member of Duvanov's defense team, told CPJ.
March 11, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Letters   |   Serbia

Editor threatened for reporting on allegations against bishop

Your Excellency: The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is concerned about threats made against Vukasin Obradovic, the owner and editor-in-chief of the Vranje-based weekly Novine Vranjske, and Goran Antic, a reporter with the publication, in retaliation for reporting allegations of sexual abuse made against Serbian Orthodox Bishop Pahomije. The bishop's...

March 10, 2003 12:00 PM ET


Alerts   |   Uzbekistan


New York, March 10, 2003—Two Uzbek journalists working for U.S. government­funded radio stations were attacked by a group of men on Friday, March 7, while trying to cover an anti-government protest in Uzbekistan's capital, Tashkent.

According to local and international press reports, Khusnutddin Kutbiddinov, of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), and Yusuf Rasulov, with Voice of America, arrived at the Chorsu bazaar in the center of Tashkent on Friday morning to report on a group of about 40 women protesting the detention and torture of their sons and husbands on charges of religious extremism.
March 10, 2003 12:00 PM ET


Alerts   |   Belarus

Court amends imprisoned journalist's sentence

New York, March 7, 2003—A Belarusian court ruled on Tuesday, March 4, that jailed journalist Mikola Markevich, editor-in-chief of the independent weekly newspaper Pahonya, could serve the remainder of his sentence in his hometown of Hrodna, in western Belarus.

Markevich will be allowed to reside with his family, but he will now have to register with Hrodna law enforcement authorities and find employment. He is also obligated to give 15 percent of his earnings to the state and sign a pledge not to leave Hrodna's city limits.
March 7, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Alerts   |   Armenia

Police arrest suspects in television chief's murder

New York, March 6, 2003—Armenian police yesterday arrested six suspects in the December 2002 murder of Tigran Nagdalian, the 36-year-old head of the state-owned Armenian Public Television. The police continue to look for other individuals linked to the crime.

Law enforcement authorities have not released the suspects' names or details of the crime, including the possible motive. But officials revealed that during the arrest they found and confiscated the handgun used to kill Nagdalian.
March 6, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Letters   |   Russia

CPJ concerned about government’s attempts to control coverage of conflict in Chechnya

Your Excellency: The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is extremely concerned about an official warning issued by the Russian Media Ministry on Wednesday, February 26, to the Moscow-based communist, ultra-nationalist weekly Zavtra. This warning, which followed the publication of an interview with exiled Chechen separatist leader Akhmed Zakayev, is the...

March 5, 2003 12:00 PM ET



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