LIBEL LAW PROPOSAL DROPPED, FOR NOW.

25.09.12


Korrespondent

Party of the Regions deputy, Vitaliy Zhuravynskiy today withdrew his proposed new law which would criminalise libel and defamation. The proposed reintroduction of this Soviet-era law was widely condemned by the EU, Council of Europe, the international organisation, Reporters without Borders, and by the Ukrainian Parliament's own human rights ombudsman,Valeria Lutkovska - all of whom voiced fears that this would damage press freedom and put influential individuals beyond the reach of media criticism.

Ukrainian journalists today began a mass campaign against the proposed law, which they see as a direct attack on freedom of the media. The journal Korrespondent carried a symbolic blank front page for the first time in its history, to symbolise the silencing of the media, while other newspapers and news websites carried banners urging people to support the campaign and contact those deputies who voted the bill through its first reading.  

The withdrawal is, however, only temporary. The Party of the Regions has said that it will return to the issue after the elections.



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