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You're reading: Yanukovych asking National TV and Radio Council to address TVi issue

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has asked members of the National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council of Ukraine to deal with the situation around the TVi channel, the president's press service reported on Monday.

The president expressed his concern about the reports that the
broadcasting and business activities of the channel were being hindered.
Yanukovych called on the National Council to consider carefully all the
statements by management and staff of the TVi about the conflicts with
government agencies and commercial organizations, the press service
said.

As reported, on July 12, 2012, reports said that a criminal case had
been opened against TVi Director Kniazhytsky. The tax police accused him
of failing to pay Hr 3 million in taxes to the budget. Kniazhytsky
said that he had already won all of the trials on this case and that he
had paid all taxes. The tax police started checking the channel’s
documents, although Head of the State Tax Service Oleksandr Klymenko
signed an order in April 2012 declaring a moratorium on media checks
before parliamentary elections.

On July 27 the prosecutor’s office cancelled an instruction on the
opening of the criminal case against Kniazhytsky. Ukrainian President
Viktor Yanukovych and Prosecutor General of Ukraine Viktor Pshonka
ordered to check whether the criminal case was opened legally.

Kniazhytsky is eleventh in the party ticket of the united opposition.

In addition, on July 20, 2012, TVi Channel said that it had been
disconnected from the cable networks of the Triolan trademark and that
residents of 11 towns in Ukraine had been deprived of a chance to watch
the channel. TVi linked this “with the pressure being placed on the
channel.”

The National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council refused to
intervene in the settlement of the conflict, saying that the conflict
between TVi and Triolan was commercial.

Journalists of the TVi channel said later 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.

On Sept. 4, Head of the National Council Volodymyr Manzhosov said
that the council would monitor all providers of program services
regarding the disconnection of the TVi Channel.

On Sept. 12, Kniazhytsky said that the channel’s foreign currency
accounts had been arrested under a letter from the Economy Ministry.
Next day, the Economic Development and Trade Ministry cancelled this
sanction.

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