Death threats against exiled Ukrainian reporter

By Jane Whyatt and Hamburg Foundation

Even in exile, with the support of the media freedom community, some critical independent journalists cannot rest easy. Aleksei Bobrovnikov fled Ukraine to escape death threats. But they have followed him on Facebook.

Death threats against exiled Ukrainian journalist Facebook threats

Bobrovnikov gave testimony at the annual conference of the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom. He spoke of his struggle to expose smuggling and gun-running in the war zone of Russian-controlled eastern Ukraine. He showed footage and photos of whistleblowers he had interviewed, who were killed a short time after their meetings.

Under extreme pressure – not only on himself but also on the editors of the TV station – he escaped to Germany. At the invitation of the Hamburg Foundation for Politically Persecuted People. The German authorities have also been informed of the threats to his physical security. And in the public space of the internet, we are calling on the media freedom community to show solidarity.

“We are outraged by these public death threats against our guest“

The Hamburg Foundation has issued a strongly-worded press release condemning the use of social media to intimidate a journalist:

 “A „legal advisor“ and former member of the reconnaissance unit of the Ukrainian army’s 92nd Brigade has publicly called for the murder of award-winning Ukrainian TV journalist Aleksei Bobrovnikov and others.

The only acceptable response to the „ Fevered fantasies of perverted bags of shit like Tuka, Matios, Kasyanov, Kulik and their dog Aleksei Bobrobnikov“ says the decorated officer Leonid Maslov on his Facebook page: „They must die. And faster than they think.“

"Aleksei Bobrovnikov has been the guest of the Hamburg Foundation for Politially Persecuted People for the past eleven months. The authorities responsible for security in the Free and Hansa City of Hamburg have been informed."

"In the course of his research on the war front in East Ukraine he came across entanglements  of the elite unit in smuggling with Russian and separatists military personnel. The Hamburg Foundation for Politically Persecuted People is outraged by these public death threats against our guest Aleksei Bobrobvnikov and others. We expect that the relevant authorities in this country which has EU associations will initiate a prosecution against Leonid Maslov.“

The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom works with the Hamburg Foundation to defend media workers under threat. ECPMF offers a Journalists-in-Residence programme

More information about the Hamburg Foundation here



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