The Media Development Center (MDC) believes that the latest case of unauthorized confiscation of journalistic materials and order to erase the recorded video footage and photographs that the journalists Saška Cvetkovska from NOVATV.mk news site, Marija Mitevska from Radio Free Europe and Meri Jordanovska from „Fokus“ weekly shot at the riots in Skopje’s borough of Gjorče Petrov constitute a new attempt to restrict the freedom of information.
We would like to remind the general public that the confiscation of journalistic material – video footage, photographs and texts – can be done only with valid court order.
We are also concerned by the allegations that the police officers suggested to the journalists, in a rude and unbecoming language, that they had no place to report on the unrest and the riots.
Journalists have the right and it is their professional obligation to report on all events of public interest, including protests and demonstrations. MDC believes it is an indisputable fact that the protest riots in Gjorče Petrov are a matter of public interest and that the public has the need to be timely and properly informed about that event.
We expect from the Sector of Internal Control of the Ministry of Interior to conduct an urgent investigation in the incident and to determine who was responsible for the incident in which journalists were prevented from performing their professional duties.