Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Kyrgyzstan: OSCE media freedom representative appeals to Kyrgyzstan's Parliament to reconsider restrictions on media

Source: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe

The OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Dunja Mijatović, expressed concern today about laws and resolutions recently adopted by the Parliament of Kyrgyzstan that could potentially limit media pluralism in the country.

“I support the view of the President of Kyrgyzstan, Roza Otunbayeva, that these measures would limit media freedom,” Mijatović said. “The legal initiatives will negatively affect media coverage of important issues by allowing the website to be blocked, by banning live broadcasting by foreign media and by stripping journalists of accreditation just before the elections.”

“It is important to preserve the achievements made in the area of media freedom, especially ahead of the presidential election scheduled for later this year,” Mijatović said. “All media, whether online or traditional, local or international, should be allowed to carry out their professional duty to inform citizens about their political choices.”

Mijatović expressed hope that the Parliament would reconsider the laws and resolutions it adopted last week.

“Calling for the blocking of media outlets and online information resources does not set a good example, especially ahead of elections. Blocking cannot be used to silence voices that we dislike or disagree with,” Mijatović said.

Office of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media