Moldova : Occcupation of RTV Moldova by the Army

Declaration – communiqué by Moldovan Committee for Press Solidarity

Additional military troops were dislocated on the grounds of the State Company Teleradio-Moldova on April 3, 2002, which occupied all halls, floors, and space between them, blocked all exits and entrances, introduced multiple filtering of journalists and technical staff, limiting their access to offices, production, editing, and broadcasting areas. Simulating a state of blockade and strict necessity regime, the management of the Company, General Directorates, and Department heads developed, upon orders from their political patrons, lists whereby employees are divided according to undisclosed criteria, limited access areas, and position. Thus, employees not included in lists, were simply removed by police from the grounds of the state Company. An especially strict regime is being applied to the News Department, and as a result of such abuses news presenters Larisa Manole and Dinu Rusnac, as well as other employees and journalists, who on February 25 started a passive strike, protesting against direct and masked censure of news broadcasts at the state TV station of the Republic of Moldova were forced out of the grounds of the TV station. The Committee for Press Solidarity wishes to remind that by occupying the broadcasting station with troops, the authorities are in serious violation of Article 10 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights, as well as the Constitution of the Republic of Moldova in the following areas: Art. 1(3). The State of the Republic of Moldova; Art. 4(1) Human rights and liberties, Art. 5. Democracy and political pluralism, Art. 7. Constitution – the supreme law; Art. 8 Upholding international law and international treaties; Art. 27. Freedom of movement; Art. 32 Freedom of opinion and expression; Art. 33. Freedom of creation; Art. 34. Right to information; Art. 43 Right to work; Art. 45 Right to strike; Press Law Art. 1 Press freedom; Art. 20 Journalist’s rights and obligations; Broadcasting law Art. 7 State Company Teleradio-Moldova is a public broadcasting institution. The Committee for Press Solidarity wishes to draw the attention of journalists in management positions within the State Company Teleradio-Moldova, who take part in the perpetration of the aforementioned abuses, that the first point of the Code of professional ethics presumes that the journalist must, in any circumstances, act according to ethical principles set forth in the Code, and article 4 of the Code of conduct reads “The journalist shall uphold the laws of his/her country, but in all matters that require following professional obligations, (s)he shall recognize the exclusive jurisdiction of one’s colleagues, resisting any attempt of pressuring and interfering on behalf of the government or anyone else”. Chisinau, April 4, 2002