VIENNA (QHA) -

The topic of the first panel on the second day of the conference was the consideration of the journalists’ safety and impunity for crimes against them. The conference is attended by representatives of the media of Ukraine and Russia, journalists from European countries, the United States and Canada, QHA correspondent reports.

During the panel discussion, the view was expressed that journalists can not be adequately protected in a conflict environment. An example was given of an Italian journalist who was abducted in Afghanistan and later released, but his assistant was killed.

The Ukrainian side is represented by the Chairman of the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine Sergey Tomilenko, the Head of the National Council on Television and Radio Broadcasting Yuri Artemenko, the Editor-in-chief of the Crimean News Agency Gayana Yuksel and other well-known Ukrainian journalists.

Sergei Tomilenko spoke again about the illegality of the occupation of the Crimea, and attention was also drawn to the fact that there are no free media on the peninsula and numerous criminal cases against journalists may serve as a confirmation. In response, a representative of the Russia said that they regard the Crimea as "not occupied, but namely, joined" and that "there are equal conditions for the work of all journalists and there is no harassment."

The Chairman of the Union of Journalists of Ukraine, Sergey Tomilenko, responded in reply that now, being at the event, Ukrainian journalists receive a lot of criticism in their address since they sit down at the same table with representatives of the aggressor state.

But, according to Tomilenko:

“We do not sit at one negotiating table, we are engaged in a dialogue, but not in a friendship. It will take a long time to achieve this friendship, and this is a distant prospect.”

Earlier QHA reported that an international conference "Media Freedom in Volatile Environments" is held under the auspices of the OSCE in Vienna on June 19-20.

QHA