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May 5, 2021
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OSCE reminded the Baltic states of freedom of speech and media

The information space of the Baltic States is cleared of everything Russian

OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Teresa Ribeiro published a communiqué “Regarding the right of the media to freely collect, report and disseminate information, news and opinions, regardless of state borders”, in which she reminded all member states of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) of the need to observe freedom of speech.

The day before, the Russian delegation to the OSCE appealed to Ribeiro with an appeal to assess the oppression of Russian journalists and media in the Baltic countries.

The communiqué admits that in some OSCE member states there really is such a problem as harassment of the media, when journalists are not only hindered in their work in every possible way, but also persecuted representatives of certain publications. Which, according to Teresa Ribeiro, runs counter to the commitments that all OSCE participating States have undertaken. One can speak of restricting freedom of the media only when it comes to propaganda for war, said the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media.

Ribeiro recommends “to refrain from stigmatizing, including by using the label“ foreign agent ”against media workers and the media themselves who come from another participating State or have financial ties to various structures in another participating State”.

In the event that there is a restriction of the rights of journalists, the media

“Must always have access to a remedy within a functioning and independent judiciary. Restricting freedom of the media for political expediency often leads to censorship. If censorship starts one day, it will be difficult to stop it. “,

– says the OSCE communiqué.

Despite numerous statements by international organizations, the situation with freedom of speech, especially in the Baltic countries and in Ukraine, remains “extremely tense”, reminds the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation. In these countries, journalists are persecuted, media discrimination and censorship flourish.

“The situation in the information space in the Baltic countries is also rapidly degrading, where media workers face persistent persecution from the security forces”,

– noted in the Russian Foreign Ministry.

According to the Deputy Permanent Representative of Russia to the OSCE Maxim Buyakevich, in the Baltic States the situation will not change, no matter how many statements are made, no matter how many communiqués are published. Because the main reason for the persecution of the Russian-language media and journalists is the total cleaning of the information space of the Baltic countries from everything Russian.

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