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Crimean journalists say Europe unprepared for truth about Crimean life

November 10, 0:57 UTC+3 SIMFEROPOL

Earlier reports said the Austrian authorities had denied visas to a number of Crimean journalists

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SIMFEROPOL, November 9. /TASS/. The EU is unprepared to hear truth about the situation in Crimea, said the Crimean journalists who failed to get Austrian visas for attending an OSCE conference on freedom of the media and were denied participation in via teleconference.

Earlier reports said the Austrian authorities had denied visas to the Director General of the Krym broadcasting company, Yekaterina Kozyr, the head of Kryminform news agency, Maxim Nikolayenko, and the chairman of the Union of Journalists in the city of Sevastopol, Sergei Gorbachov. The denial made it impossible for them to attend the conference.

On Thursday, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s official spokesperson Maria Zakharova said the journalists had been denied even the access by televised linkup or a video address.

"I’m not a bit surprised by the actions of the OSCE and Austria that is presiding over it right now," Maxim Nikolayenko told TASS. "The West is unable to accept truth and it fears the Crimean reporters will tell everything about the real events here."

Yekaterina Kozyr agreed with him, saying the OSCE’s decision violated the fundamental principles of journalism.

"Europe is unprepared to hear truth about the situation in Crimea today and it gives preference to the ‘experts’ on Crimean affairs who have never set foot on Crimean soil," she said. "They don’t have any interest in the situation in the republic."

Sergei Gorbachov sized up the OSCE decision as a testimony to the dwindling freedom of journalism in the West.

"One can abandon all the talk about freedom of journalism in the West because it has been jolted as an institute and is falling to pieces," he said. "Reporting has turned into an instrument, into a hostage held by the politicians to strive to fulfill their own objectives and tasks."

Kozyr added that Crimean reporters would not give up the attempts to tell truth about the situation in the Republic of Crimea on European political floors.

"We’re living in the 21st century, an era of IT, and we’re ready to communicate with any region in the world with the aid of televised linkups," she said. "From the point of view of technologies, everything we have here is top-notch. We won’t give up the efforts to tell truth to the Europeans.".

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