| The Secretary-General of the Russian Union of Journalists,
Igor Yakovenko, does not believe that the state wants to guarantee the
media's economic independence.
He said this when commenting on Ekho Moskvi radio on the information
on three laws to guarantee the media's economic independence, which are
being drafted at Russia's State Duma.
Yakovenko said that to guarantee the media's independence, the "state
must radically change its policy", as " the federal authorities
are posing the main threat to the media's independence".
Over the past four years the federal authorities have pursued a purposeful
policy aiming to "fully nationalize" media outlets and "oust
journalism from them", he said.
He added that television currently reflected just three components:
feature films, propaganda and business shows. "The most widely distributed
newspapers are choosing approximately the same model to survive",
"Journalists are thereby being turned into the main enemies of
the people," said Yakovenko. "Over the past four years various
officials, starting from the top, have constantly said that journalists
are to blame for everything." Journalists recently have been accused
of provoking the banking crisis and of wrongly covering the situation
concerning the replacement of social benefits with cash, said Yakovenko.
If the state continues this sort of policy toward the media, then, "at
some point in time, one will be able to read about media independence
only in alternative textbooks on history," noted Yakovenko.
Based on the BBC monitoring
of Speech and Media Law in Russia