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Russia’s human rights ombudsman urges Ukraine to abide by OSCE principles

August 30, 21:59 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The journalists should get maximally free conditions for work, according to the chairman of the presidential council for civic society and human rights

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MOSCOW, August 30. /TASS/. Ukraine should follow the OSCE principles in setting up the conditions friendly for the operations of foreign reporters, Mikhail Fedotov, the chairman of the presidential council for civic society and human rights said on Wednesday.

When reporters turned to him for comments on the detention of Channel One Russia’s reporter Anna Kurbatova by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) for further deportation, he said: "Ukraine is a member-state of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and it must respect the obligations on the friendly conditions for foreign reporters all the members of the OSCE undersigned."

"The journalists should get maximally free conditions for work, for entering a country, and for seeing and informing their audiences promptly on what they see with their own eyes," Fedotov said.

He said the Ukrainian authorities had the right to deport Anna Kurbatova only if she had violated the country’s immigration laws.

"Still, if they deport her because she is a reporter for a Russian TV channel, this is simply outside the category of good things and evil things," Fedotov continued. "If the deportation is linked to her professional activity, then the OSCE representative for freedom of the media will most likely express surprise and indignation over the incident."

On Wednesday, Russian television channels said Anna Kurbatova, the special correspondent of Channel One Russia in Kiev had been kidnapped. Earlier, she had more than once received threats for her coverage of the ongoing developments in Ukraine.

On August 26, the notorious Ukrainian portal Mirotvorets put her name to the ‘limbo’ section for what the administrators of the portal described as a biased presentation of a story on the Independence Day military parade in Kiev.

The SBU said in connection with Kurbatova’s kidnapping that everything strictly met the provisions of law. SBU press secretary Yelena Gitlyanskaya later Kurbatova would be returned to Russia forcibly.

"This will happen to everyone who will be audacious enough to discredit Ukraine," Gitlyanskaya said.

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