#AceWorldNews says the “Russian Tactics and Tricks” are becoming ever more under-handed and are preventing Journalist’s from doing their job of reporting in the country.
Nikolai Iarst is an experienced reporter. He was arrested on May 23 and charged with “illegal possession of drugs”. In house-arrest, he was cut from any contact with his friends and colleagues for more than six months. Though just released, he’s still facing up to 10 years in prison. The investigation against him was marked by many inconsistencies and violations of procedure, which are too important to be taken as simple negligence.
Mestnaia is a newspaper known for its critical editorial views against the local authorities. It covers many issues including corruption, water and electricity cuts, fraud in hospitals, environmental concerns, and abuses of workers preparing the Sochi Olympics. On June 7, 2013, Mestnaia offices were searched under the pretence of an investigation for “violation of copyrights”. All computers were seized. The police were then able to access all data and sources’ contact information available on the computers, violating the principle of confidentiality of sources.
In Russia, local authorities play a crucial role in the distribution of financial subsidies to media outlets, which gives them a “right” to examine the editorial content. The independent newspaper of the Sochi Novaia Gazeta Koubani region does no’t accept this rule and is consequently facing financial difficulties. To continue to investigate corruption and collusion is a complicated challenge. According to its editor in chief Galina Tachmatova, the newspaper is constantly facing 5 or 6 lawsuits. Even if this very scrupulous newspaper always succeeds in proving it was right, lawsuits are expensive, time consuming and hinder journalistic work.
Join the fight against these tactics.
Head of Research Department
Reporters Without Borders