On May 3 at the Journalists Union of Armenia the ceremony of presenting “The
Time for Freedom of Press” award was held in celebration of the World Press
Freedom Day. The award was established in 2006 by the four journalistic associations
– Yerevan Press Club, Internews Media Support NGO, Journalists Union of Armenia
and the Committee to Protect Freedom of Expression.
In 2008, the winner of “The Time for Freedom of Press” award became the Board
Chairman of “Asparez” Journalist’s Club of Gyumri Levon Barseghian – for the
consistent protection of media freedom. He received a certificate and a traditional
gift of watch.
The message on World Press Freedom Day of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
expresses alarm at the increased attacks on journalists all over the world,
lack of throughout investigation and prosecution of these crimes.
The OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Miklos Haraszti in his statement
on May 3 also noted the rising violence targeting journalists in several OSCE
countries and the fact that such actions were conducted with impunity, resulting
in “censorship by violence”. “In the past year we saw deterioration in two crucial
dimensions of press freedom – the physical security of journalists, and the
legal protections of critical speech”, Miklos Haraszti stressed. “In revenge
for critical coverage, or because of attempts to prevent it, journalists have
suffered physical violence ranging from beatings to murders in Armenia, Azerbaijan,
Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Hungary, Kyrgyzstan, Montenegro, Russia,
Serbia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia “, the statement of
the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media said in particular.