International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today said that the arrest on
Tuesday of General Oleksiy Pukach, the main suspect in the murder of Ukrainian
journalist Georgy Gongadze who was killed in 2000, and his reported confessions
to the killing provide authorities with a unique opportunity to reveal the
truth about this vicious crime and bring to justice all those who were
responsible for it.
is the moment of truth which Georgy's family and colleagues have been waiting
for," said Jim Boumelha, IFJ
President. "The authorities must not miss this opportunity to uncover the ring
leaders in this crime."
to reports quoting senior police sources in Ukraine, General Oleksiy Pukach who was arrested on
Tuesday has confessed to Georgy's murder and reportedly indicated that other
senior politicians were involved.
was the chief of the interior ministry's surveillance department in 2000 when
Georgy, publisher of the Internet
journal Ukrainska Prawda , was
kidnapped and his beheaded body found months later. The journalist had been
investigation corruption at senior levels of the Ukrainian government led by former
President Leonid Kuchma.
IFJ and its affiliates from all over the world have been campaigning to obtain
justice for George. They joined the United States,
the European Union, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, along with every other major human rights and
journalism pressure group, in voicing concern over the Government's handling of
particular, the IFJ published a report in 2003 "Unity For
Justice :The Challenge of Change for Journalism in the Ukraine" which denounced
the lack of commitment to solve Georgy's murder following a joint mission of
inquiry to Ukraine with the National Union of Journalists in UK and Ireland(NUJ),
an IFJ affiliate.
In 2008, three former policemen, Mykola Protasov, Valeriy Kostenko and Oleksandr
were charged with killing Georgy were convicted and sentenced to jail terms. Former Minister of Interior, Yuri Kravchenko who was also linked to the murder
allegedly committed suicide,
"The murder of Georgy has
been a tale of turns and twists which many believe were diversionary tactics to
shield powerful individuals who are behind it from accountability," added
Boumel. "That is no longer an option with the arrest of Pukach and the
information he is able to disclose. We expect the whole truth and nothing but
For more information
contact the IFJ at +32 2 235 2207
The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists
in 123 countries worldwide