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SBU Conducts Searches in RIA Novosti Ukraine Offices, Detains Journalists
16 May 2018, 12:58 | Opal Carroll
Ruslan Shamukov TASS
Soon after that, searches were conducted in the news agency's Kiev office and press center, as well as in some journalists' apartments.
Ukraine's state security service searched the Kiev offices of Russia's state-run RIA Novosti news agency and TV channel RT on Tuesday, after detaining one journalist near his home, officials said. "It is something that includes worldwide human rights law", Nauert added.
"Investigative actions are continuing, there are searches in RIA Novosti and other media structures", Olena Gitlyanska, a spokeswoman for the SBU security services told AFP.
According to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which condemned the SBU raid and Vyshynsky's detention, Vyshynsky is a Ukrainian citizen with a Russian passport.
The Kyiv government has long accused Russian state news agencies of stirring up conflict in the region. The journalist and his colleagues in Kiev stopped answering phone calls. The SBU and prosecutors had uncovered the illegal activity of a Russian-controlled media chain in Ukraine. I reiterate my call on the authorities to refrain from imposing unnecessary limitations on the work of foreign journalists, which affects the free flow of information and freedom of the media', the message said.
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He reminded Kiev that under Helsinki Final Act, the OSCE members are obliged to provide safe conditions for journalists to operate in the country. "The criminalization of alternative news and views has no place in a democratic Ukraine".
A lawyer of chief of RIA Novosti's Kyiv office Kirill Vyshinsky, who was detained on May 15 and was indicted on charges of high treason in Ukraine, has said his client is being transferred by Ukrainian law enforcers from Kyiv to Kherson for hearings on a preventive measure.
"Kiev authorities have any respect for the worldwide media whose position does not suit Kiev", spokesperson Maria Zakharova said in a statement. The director of the public media conglomerate Rossiya Segodnya, the parent company of the two media operations raided in Kiev, called for the release of Vyshynsky and said the "persecution" of Russian media in Ukraine must end.
Zakharova also criticized the Western states and worldwide organizations for not paying enough attention to crackdown on the press in Ukraine.
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