On 14 June, RWB urged the political parties in the Republic of Moldova to act responsibly and to respect the freedom of the press, given that ‘about 16 journalists were affected during the manifestations of 7-9 June ‘organised by the supporters of the Democratic Party’.
‘We urge all political forces to do everything possible to stop this wave of violence,’ said Johann Bihr, the head of the RWB office for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. ‘The media should be able to cover events and demonstrations in order to fulfill their public interest mission. It is the duty of the organisers of demonstrations and of the police to protect the journalists. If such attacks become commonplace, an atmosphere of censorship and intimidation will be established in the society.’
Reporters Without Borders also draws the attention that amidst political polarization and control of the oligarchs over the media, the Republic of Moldova lost ten places in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index and is now ranked 91st out of 180 countries.
In the context of the same events, on Friday, 14 June, the Representative of Freedom House for Europe and Eurasia, Marc Behrendt, urged the Moldovan Government to ensure that journalists can do their job freely and without obstruction. ‘Journalists need to be able to do their work to provide objective information to the public and to gain access to truth without intimidation or violence,’ said Marc Behrendt. ‘The authorities and the protesters must act in such a way as to ensure that journalists do their job freely and without impediments,’ said the Representative of Freedom House for Europe and Eurasia, recalling that respect for press freedom is ‘crucial’ now that Moldova is trying to take steps towards democracy.
Note that the journalists from the Republic of Moldova came into the sight of various international organisations that defend the rights of journalists and monitor the world media following the events of 7-9 June, when journalists were assaulted and intimidated during the protests organised by the Democratic Party of Moldova (PDM). Thus, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media came up with a Public Call for the Moldovan authorities and urged them to ensure safe working conditions for journalists. Also, the international organization IFEX published the statement of media NGOs from Moldova in which they condemned the aggression of several media representatives during the protests of PDM.