Reporters Without Borders condemn the detention of journalists during the dispersal of rallies in support of Navalny
Thousands turn out across Russia to protest Navalny arrest | DW News
Meanwhile, the opposition team said that the court on Thursday will consider his appeal.
Organization «Reporters Without Borders» urged the European Union to impose new sanctions on Russian officials after more than 50 journalists were arbitrarily detained on 23 January while covering demonstrations in support of opposition leader Alexei Navalny in 17 Russian cities.
The data on the detention of journalists, some of whom were ill-treated by the police, are based on the statistics of the resource «OVD-Info», of the Russian Trade Union of Journalists and Media Workers and information collected by the organization itself.
«Police deliberately targeted certain media outlets, to the point of breaking into private homes to disable video coverage of demonstrations», – said the head of the RSF Bureau for Eastern Europe and Central Asia Jeanne Cavelier, calling «a sign of the absolute disproportionate repression» the fact that the police even detained journalists wearing special vests and headbands with an inscription «press».
«Clearly, the goal was to prevent them from demonstrating the magnitude of their support for an opponent of the government., – she added. – We call on the Russian authorities to end this blatant obstruction of freedom of information and urge the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Teresa Ribeiro to condemn the violence and arbitrary arrests. We also call on the European Union to adopt new sanctions against Russian officials.».
The organization also notes that police tried to intimidate journalists ahead of protests in support of Navalny, who was detained upon returning to Russia on January 17 and detained for 30 days for violating the conditional release..
Meanwhile, a close associate of the opposition leader Leonid Volkov said on Tuesday that a Russian court on Thursday will hear an appeal against the decision to place Navalny in custody..
Tens of thousands of people across the country took part in protests last Saturday. Navalny’s team called for new protests on January 31.