KIEV, February 3. /TASS/. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has assured that he supports freedom of speech but opposes "propaganda financed by the aggressor country." He thus commented on the decision to crack down on three TV channels and their owner, lawmaker Taras Kozak.
"Sanctions is a difficult decision. Ukraine strongly supports Freedom Of Speech," he wrote in a Twitter post on Wednesday.
Zelensky clarified that his clampdown was aimed at countering Russia and at protecting Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic desires. "Not propaganda financed by the aggressor country that undermines Ukraine on its way to EU & EuroAtlantic integration," the president claimed. The head of state insisted that these sanctions were imposed because of the country’s so-called struggle for sovereignty. Zelensky tweeted that "fight for independence is fight in the information war for truth & European values."
Sanctions is a difficult decision. #Ukraine strongly supports #FreedomOfSpeech. Not propaganda financed by the aggressor country that undermines Ukraine on its way to #EU & EuroAtlantic integration.Fight for independence is fight in the information war for truth & European values— Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) February 3, 2021
The Twitter post was published only in English, without a translation into the state language - Ukrainian. Some social media users suggested that by doing so Zelensky is trying to explain his actions to the West.
On Tuesday, Zelensky greenlighted sanctions slapped on three TV channels and their owner, member of Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (parliament) Taras Kozak. These restrictions will be in effect for five years. These measures envisage annulling or suspending licenses as well as banning the use of Ukrainian TV and radio frequencies. Their assets will be blocked, and their economic and financial liabilities will be frozen. The management will not be allowed to transfer financial assets to foreign countries, engage in transactions with securities and open accounts in foreign banks.
Besides, personal sanctions were imposed on Taras Kozak, a lawmaker representing the Opposition Platform - For Life party. Kozak will be restricted in using and managing his assets. His trade operations will be restricted, and his economic and financial liabilities will be frozen.