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Media: Protest against slander bill to continue on Oct.2

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Oct. 2, 2012, 8:39 a.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

Reporters hold blank sheets of paper in protest to libel law criminalizing slander.
© Kostyantyn Chernichkin

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On October 2 journalists and citizens will stage the second protest against bill No. 11013 on the criminalization of slander authored by Regions Party parliamentary faction MP Vitaliy Zhuravsky.

According to the Telekritika publication, the protest will start at 1000. The event will be organized by the Independent Media Trade Union of Ukraine and the Stop Censorship movement. The protesters will demand from the parliamentarians to cancel the passing of the bill at first reading.

"Journalists are calling on everyone to come to the rally with white papers as a symbol of censored press and without party symbols," Telekritika says.

As reported, on October 1 around 200 people, mainly journalists, picketed the building of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, where a meeting of the conciliatory council of the leaders of parliamentary factions and committees took place.

On September 18, the Verkhovna Rada passed at first reading a bill by Vitaliy Zhuravsky introducing amendments to the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine concerning the tightening of responsibility for infringement on honor, dignity and business reputation." The document proposes adding Article 145-1 on slander to the Criminal Code.

A national protest against the adoption of the bill started in Ukraine on September 25.

On the same day, the author of the slander bill, Regions Party parliamentary faction MP Vitaliy Zhuravsky registered at the parliament a draft instruction on the cancellation of a decision by the Verkhovna Rada to pass at first reading the bill on amendments to the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine on toughening punishments for the infringement of the honor, dignity and business reputation of a person.

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