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Radicals blocking TV channel prove Kiev’s security officials are powerless — politician

December 03, 2017, 21:49 UTC+3 KIEV

Editorial policies of mass media outlets can be a subject for discussion and a subject matter of lawsuits but physical blocking is nothing but barbarism

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KIEV, December 3. /TASS/. The situation over the blocked television channel in Kiev is yet another evidence that the Ukrainian law enforcers are unable or reluctant to establish order in the country, leader of the Ukrainian Choice public movement Viktor Medvedchuk said on Sunday.

"Radical’s outrage in front of the NewsOne channel’s building is yet another evidence of law enforcers’ impotence and their unwillingness to establish order in the country and rebuff rampaging radicals," he wrote on his Twitter account.

Meanwhile, head of Ukraine’s National Union of Journalists Sergei Tomilenko said that the blocking of the NewsOne television channel is seen as pressure on the mass media which impedes journalists’ professional activities.

"Blocking entryways by sacks with sand, breaking windows and setting editorial offices on fire (I would like to recall that an arson attempt was reported at the national television channel Inter in September 2016) - all this is a direct hindering journalists’ professional activities, a pressure on the mass media and a threat to physical safety," he wrote on his Facebook account. "Moreover, we see law enforcers demonstrating a selective approach, with thousands policemen patrolling government quarters and sending only a couple of patrols to NewsOne."

According to Tomilenko, editorial policies of mass media outlets can be a subject for discussion and a subject matter of lawsuits but physical blocking is nothing but barbarism.

On Sunday evening, more than 150 men in face masks blocked an entryway to a business center housing the NewsOne television channel with sacks with sand, barbed wire and a minibus.

One of the radicals, Alexei Serdyuk, said in a live broadcast the blockade will stay in place until the TV channel’s owner, Yevgeny Murayev "offer apologies of the Celestial Hundred Heros" (i.e. people who were killed in Kiev’s maidan, or Independence Square, following a state coup on February 18-20, 2014. Apart from that, he accused the television channel of conducting an anti-Ukrainian policy and demanded it be changed.

In the meantime, the TV company said it thinks the situation stems from the fact that only NewsOne was providing coverage of the March for Impeachment organized by former governor of the Odessa Region and now the leader of the Movement of New Forces, Mikhail Saakashvili earlier on Sunday.

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