MOSCOW, March 30. /TASS/. Russia calls on specialized international organizations, including OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Desir, to exert pressure on the Kiev authorities to end arbitrary actions against mass media in Ukraine, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Saturday commenting on the deportation of Russian journalist Margarita Bondar from the country.
"We once again call on specialized international organizations, in particular, OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Desir as well as the relevant non-governmental organizations, primarily Reporters Without Borders and the International Federation of Journalists to continue to exert pressure on the Ukrainian authorities to put an end to their outrageous arbitrary actions against mass media," the ministry stressed.
The Russian Foreign Ministry added that by doing this, Kiev officials "follow the line of blatant violation of journalists’ rights and suppression of free will." The Russian diplomats stated that this case forms part of a sequence of "repressive measures against Russian journalists" working on the territory of Ukraine.
"In this way, the Kiev regime continues to ignore the current international legal and political obligations of Ukraine on ensuring the right to freedom of opinion." The ministry added that Western countries continue to "turn a blind eye to the politics of suppression of dissent in Ukraine."
According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, last year, eight members of the Russian media were deported from Ukraine or denied entry to the country under false pretenses. Dozens of Russian mass media outlets were banned. Reporters from other countries, namely Austria and Italy, have also fallen victim to such politics, the ministry pointed out.
On March 27, the State Migration Service of Ukraine ruled to deport Margarita Bondar, Russian reporter working for the Ukraina.ru outlet, for "violation of migration law." The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) informed that the journalist "published fake and provocative materials" on the mistreatment of national minorities in the country by members of Ukrainian nationalist organizations, as well as the alleged lack of response from Ukrainian authorities.