Information discrimination in Ukraine, the United States, France, and the Baltic States is exposed not only to media representatives but also to ordinary citizens, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the OSCE Alexander Lukashevich said on Thursday.
In response to the report of the OSCE representative on freedom of the media, Teresa Ribera, which she addressed at the permanent council of the organization, Lukashevich stressed that the task of ensuring freedom of expression and access to information does not lose its relevance.
“The most difficult situation is observed in Ukraine, the United States, France, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia, where not only representatives of the professional journalistic community but also ordinary citizens are subjected to information discrimination. We covered these stories in detail here on April 29, in connection with World Press Freedom Day. The Representative for Freedom of the Media should pay special attention to them. This is necessary to stop violations of obligations in the field of access to information, as well as to correct the geographical imbalance in the work of this OSCE executive structure,” Lukashevich said at an online meeting of the OSCE Post – Council.
He also called on Ribera to make assessments on an equal and impartial basis, avoiding “double standards” for states “east of Vienna.” According to him, the OSCE representative expressed concerns about the alleged ill-treatment of journalists by police officers during protest actions in Russia or Belarus, but the police violence-taking place in the United States remains without proper public attention. So, the American NGO U.S. Press Freedom Tracker only for one day of rallies in Brooklyn Center (Minnesota) on April 16 recorded 17 cases of ill-treatment of media employees and 15 detentions of journalists, he added. “For some reason, there is no mention of this either in the press releases or in the representative’s Twitter account. And if there are no “concerns,” then there is no reflection of them in the report, which may call into question the balance of the document itself,” the permanent representative concluded.