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Dismissal of Radio Liberty journalists and staff is a political mistake

Statement by Sergei Mitrokhin and Grigory Yavlinsky

October 10, 2012

The Russian United Democratic Party YABLOKO expresses its deep concern with the situation around the Radio Liberty Russian Service. Mass dismissal of the key journalists of the Moscow Bureau endangers the very existence of Radio Liberty as an objective and high-quality media.

The official version about transfer to the new digital technologies and abolishing of broadcasting on the medium waves is beyond any criticism. If this were the real reason, then the Radio Liberty management would not have fired in the first ranks the staff of the Radio Liberty web-site, which made the Radio Liberty web-site one of the most respected and quoted political resources of the Russian segment of the Internet.

Apparently, this demonstrates a bureaucratic error turning into a political error. Bureaucrats from mass media were solving their narrow tasks and did not take into account the political consequences, which are as follows: the Russian audience is deprived of the source of information they have trusted for decades, and it is obvious that the reputation of the media is, above all, the reputation of its journalists.

Russian politicians and human rights activists have lost a channel which in the situation of media censorship helped them to communicate their views to the citizens.

As we see it, there is still a chance to correct the situation and not to let a bureaucratic error turn into a political error.

Sergei Mitrokhin

Grigory Yavlinsky

See also:

Freedom of Speech






October 10, 2012

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