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BBC Calls on Ukraine to Remove Journalists From Sanctions List

© AFP 2023 / NICOLAS ASFOURIPedestrians walks past the doors of the BBC's Bush House in London. File photo
Pedestrians walks past the doors of the BBC's Bush House in London. File photo - Sputnik International
BBC called on Ukrainian authorities to remove channel's journalists from the list of sanctions and added that the measure is a "shameful attack on media freedom."

LONDON (Sputnik) – BBC is urging Kiev to remove the British broadcaster’s journalists from Ukraine’s list of sanctions, pointing to the measures’ violation of freedom of speech.

"This is a shameful attack on media freedom. These sanctions are completely inappropriate and inexplicable measures to take against BBC journalists who are reporting the situation in Ukraine impartially and objectively and we call on the Ukrainian Government to remove their names from this list immediately," BBC Foreign Editor Andrew Roy told RIA Novosti.

On Wednesday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree imposing "personal special economic and other restrictive measures (sanctions)" on over 400 individuals and 90 entities.

BBC Moscow correspondent Steve Rosenberg and producer Emma Wells are among those barred from entering the country for one year.

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Russian, Greek, Italian, Israeli and Spanish political figures and journalists were also named on the list.

According to Poroshenko, the sanctions will contribute to the defense of Ukraine, as well as Europe as a whole.

The restrictive measures come amid a conflict in Ukraine’s southeast, where the self-proclaimed people’s republics of Donetsk and Luhansk (DPR and LPR) have been striving to obtain more autonomy from Kiev.

In April 2014, the new Kiev government, which came to power as a result of a coup, launched a military operation against Donetsk and Luhansk independence supporters. Kiev, along with Western governments, has accused Moscow of meddling in Ukraine’s internal affairs. The claims have not been supported with any factual evidence and Moscow has repeatedly denied them.

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Amid violence in Ukraine’s southeast, the freedom of media, particularly Russian media, has been repeatedly violated. According to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), a number of international journalists working in Ukraine have been kidnapped, tortured and killed since the start of the conflict.

Ukraine’s conflicting sides signed a peace agreement in the Belarusian capital, Minsk, in February 2015. The ceasefire deal was reached during talks between the leaders of Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine.

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