| JRL Home | JRL Simple/Mobile | RSS | Newswire | Archives | JRL Newsletter | Support | About
Old Saint Basil's Cathedral in MoscowJohnson's Russia List title and scenes of Saint Petersburg
Excerpts from the JRL E-Mail Community :: Founded and Edited by David Johnson

New watchdog boosts hopes for Russian press freedom

Wake for Murdered JournalistHuman rights activists have given a cautious welcome to newly-appointed Kremlin watchdog Mikhail Fedotov.

Hopes are high that the appointment of the former press minister will improve media freedom in the country.
[Original of image copyright (c) 2010. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036]

"Fedotov worked in a time when press freedom was being developed in Russia so hopefully he will help the process of getting Russian television and press out of state control. His appointment is a good choice," Tatyana Lokshina, Russian Researcher at Human Rights Watch, told The Moscow News.

Fedotov was appointed press minister in the early 1990s as the media emerged from the grip of Soviet censorship and was a co-author of the law on mass media.

He has written more than 100 books and articles on human rights and intellectual property in Russia and represented the country at UNESCO from 1993-98.

Difficult task

Fedotov replaces Ella Pamfilova, who stepped down from the role in July complaining that she was under pressure from both the authorities and human rights groups.

And Lokshina warned that the new man faced a tough time.

"The situation with human rights and non-governmental organisations is very bad in Russia, in 2009 six activists were murdered in Caucuses and the constant raids in NKO offices continue, so the key task for Fedotov is to put the official words and deeds together," she said.

And Fedotov himself is under no illusions about the challenges he faces, telling Moskovsky Komsomolets there was a sense that "decent people were fleeing the structures for cooperation between the government and society" when Pamfilova resigned.

After his appointment he identified three priorities: the 'de-Stalinisation' of public awareness, judicial and police reforms and protection for children and families.

Keyword Tags:

Russia, Human Rights - Russia, Law, Crime, Corruption - Russia, Government - Johnson's Russia List - Russia News - Russia

Bookmark and Share - Back to the Top -        


Bookmark and Share

- Back to the Top -        

  Follow Johnson's Russia List on Twitter Tweet