VIENNA, December 9. /TASS/. The Russian delegation will raise the issue of hindrance of the work of Russian journalists by the Turkish authorities on Thursday at the meeting of the OSCE Permanent Council, Russia’s OSCE Ambassador Alexander Lukashevich told TASS on Wednesday.
"We will raise this issue at the Permanent Council tomorrow in conjunction with other problems created by a number of countries for Russian journalists, in particular in Poland and Lithuania," he said. "We will seek to ensure that the OSCE reaction to such cases is tough and uncompromising."
"We will place the emphasis on the absolute inadmissibility of such steps," he added. According to Lukashevich, so far there has been no response from the Office of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Dunja Mijatovic. "We reiterated once again that such cases require immediate response," the Russian diplomat said, adding that "this is another example of the wait-and-see stance adopted by this office and representative", which "triggers numerous questions."
According to Lukashevich, the deportation of the Russian journalists from Turkey is an attempt to hamper the work of the media on the issues the Turkish authorities would prefer to keep in the shadow. "Most likely, this is an attempt to restrict the work of our journalists on the issues the Turkish government would be not particularly enthusiastic about," he noted.
The Russian Foreign Ministry earlier said that on December 7, members of the crew of the Special Correspondent program of the Rossiya 1 TV channel had been detained in in Hatay province in southeastern Turkey bordering Syria as they were going to the neighboring province of Gaziantep. The detention was carried out by unknown persons wearing civilian clothes who, in reply to the journalists’ legitimate request, refused to introduce themselves and let them see their IDs. The Russian crew was taken to a police department where they were told about the decision to deport them from Turkey because of, as they were told, "the violation of the rules of activity of foreign journalists in Turkey," the ministry said. The Turkish authorities refused to give explanations to representatives of the Russian Embassy in Turkey who got in touch with the crew shortly after its detention," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.