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Opposition urging international community to help reduce pressure on TVi Channel

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Aug. 31, 2012, 4:28 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

The Batkivschyna United Opposition has said that cable television operators have removed the TVi channel from their packages under pressure from the current authorities.
© Sohei Yasui

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The Batkivschyna United Opposition has said that cable television operators have removed the TVi channel from their packages under pressure from the current authorities, which want to introduce an information dictatorship and political censorship in the media.

"We appeal to international institutions, in particular to the PACE, the OSCE, and the European Parliament, with a request to draw the appropriate conclusions from such evidence of pressure on the media during the election campaign. We are asking you to use all of the means of influence available to you to force the current government to stop the political persecution of independent Ukrainian media, prevent the suppression of the freedom of speech in Ukraine, and the breaking of the law and the principles of democracy during the parliamentary elections," the United Opposition said in a statement.

The opposition also urged the public and journalists to unite efforts to resist the attempts by the authorities to gain control over independent media and to introduce political censorship in the country.

As reported, journalists of the TVi channel said that the cable operator Volia, without warning, had decided to move the channel starting this fall from the popular basic package of channels into the extended expensive package, which only one third of its subscribers use. The channel's staff said it believes that the pressure on TVi, which began at the start of the election campaign, is aimed at "destroying the last television channel that is not controlled by the authorities."

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