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Parliament restores limited access for journalists during plenary sessions

by Kateryna Hodunova May 8, 2024 7:19 PM 2 min read
Photo for illustrative purposes. Ukraine's parliament building. (Getty Images)
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Ruslan Stefanchuk, the speaker of Ukraine's parliament, signed an order on May 8 to restore limited access for journalists to cover the legislature's work.

Since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion in 2022, journalists have been prohibited from attending plenary sessions due to security reasons.

Ukraine's parliament also adopted a regulation on Sep. 6, 2022, forbidding live streaming of the sessions during martial law. Since then, the video recordings of the sessions have been uploaded with a delay on the parliament's YouTube channel.

Only up to 30 journalists will be allowed to work in the parliament's building at once due to security measures and the limited number of places in the bomb shelter, according to the statement.

Stefanchuk and the parliament's Secretary General Viacheslav Shtuchnyi held a meeting with journalists on May 7 and instructed them how to work during martial law, including order of action when an air raid alert goes off.

Working conditions for media representatives have already been created, including equipped workplaces, a place for briefings, recording interviews, and broadcasting meetings, among others, the statement read.

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Ukraine Weekly By Olga Rudenko

Shtuchnyi said on May 1 that some journalists have already applied for the accreditation, but parliament can accredit more media workers if needed.

According to the State Security Administration, over 4,000 journalists had the parliament's accreditation before the beginning of the all-out war.

Yaroslav Yurchyshyn, the head of the parliament's Committee on Freedom of Speech, said earlier that there was a significant demand in society to allow journalists to return to the parliament.

Yurchyshyn noted that his committee does not see any convincing argument for why it cannot be done.

Freedom of speech committee examining reported surveillance of Ukrainian investigative outlet
Ukraine’s parliamentary committee on freedom of speech is investigating the reported surveillance of investigative outlet Bihus.Info, committee head, lawmaker Yaroslav Yurchyshyn, told Radio Free Europe on Jan. 17.
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