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Media NGOs Disapprove the Statements of the Minister of Internal Affairs on Restricting the Access of the Journalist Vadim Ungureanu to MIA Events

17 July 2019
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Media NGOs disapprove of the request of the Minister of Internal Affairs, Andrei Nastase, to restrict the access of the journalist Vadim Ungureanu to the press conferences of the General Police Inspectorate (GPI), on the ground that the latter would have a criminal conviction. The statement was made during a press briefing held at GPI headquarters on Sunday, 14 July, when certain journalists, including Vadim Ungureanu, asked Andrei Nastase questions that the dignitary avoided to answer.

We disapprove of such statements made by a public official. The fact that an individual had a criminal file cannot serve as grounds to be denied the access to a press conference. The Code of Criminal Procedure states that ‘an individual charged with the commission of a crime shall be presumed innocent until his/her guilt is confirmed by a final conviction sentence of the court’.

We condemn such statements and remind the Minister of Internal Affairs that journalists have the right to obtain and share information, film, make audiovisual recordings and take pictures. In addition, Article 6(1) of the Law on Freedom of Speech states that any individual shall be free to receive information of public interest through the media.

We call on the Minister of Internal Affairs not to restrict the presence of journalists to the events organised by GPI and MIA, so that all media representatives have equal and free access to the public information of the institution.
 
Independent Journalism Center
Association of Electronic Press
Association of Independent TV Journalists
‘Access-Info’ Center