Afrique Ameriques Asie Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
Russia16 December 2004

Japanese journalist expelled and banned from Russia for five years

Japanese freelance journalist Kosuke Tsuneoka, a Caucasus specialist, was finally expelled from Russia following a 2 December ruling by a court in Nazran, Ingushetia. He was fined 1,000 roubles and banned from Russian territory for five years. He had conducted a number of interviews in Ingushetia without having accreditation.

Japanese journalist faces five-year ban from Russia

3 december 2004

Russian version

Reporters Without Borders wrote to Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov today voicing concern at the possibility that Japanese freelance journalist Kosuke Tsuneoka could be banned from Russia for five years after reportedly conducting interviews in Ingushetia without being registered or accredited and while travelling on a business visa.

The organisation asked Lavrov to clarify why Tsuneoka, a specialist in the Caucasus, was arrested at the station in the Ingush capital of Nazran by station security agents on 19 November and charged with "violating administrative orders."

Ingush security sources told a correspondent with the Russian news agency ITAR-TASS that he would very probably be sentenced to a fine and a five-year ban from Russian territory.

"The extension of ’anti-terrorist action zones’ to more and more places in Russia, especially after the Beslan tragedy, has made it virtually impossible for foreign journalists who want to go to Ingushetia to obtain accreditation," Reporters Without Borders said.

"It would be disproportionate to ban a journalist from Russia for five years because he met refugees and survivors of the Beslan hostage tragedy," the organisation added.

The charges against Tsuneoka were considered by a regional court in Nazran in a preliminary hearing on 30 November. Tsuneoka arrived in Russia on 24 October and at first looked into a committee of mothers of soldiers. Then he went to Vladikavkaz to meet the victims of the Beslan tragedy.

Tsuneoka has often visited the Caucasus, visiting both the Russian part of the region and Georgia. He disappeared in the Pankisi Gorge (in the border area between Russia and Georgia) in August 2001 and, according to official accounts, he was released thanks to the intervention of the Georgian intelligence services.

Russian version

  In this country
2 June - Russia
Journalist seeks asylum in Finland after being convicted for prison torture articles
1 May - Russia
Newspaper editor in coma after latest case of violence against journalists
10 April - Russia
Prosecutors say Novaya Gazeta journalist’s mysterious death was not murder
1er April - Russia
Local newspaper reporter dies two days after beating, human rights activist attacked outside Moscow home
16 March - Russia
Official issued Politkovskaya killer with fake passport

in the annual report
Russia - Annual Report 2008
Russia - Annual report 2007
Russia - 2006 Annual report

Europe press releases
4 June - Kosovo
Rrokum TV station still excluded by national broadcasting network
2 June - Ukraine
Potential witness’s death deals severe blow to probe into journalist’s murder
2 June - Turkey
Woman journalist held for past five weeks on baseless charge of link to armed group
29 May - France
Regrettable decision by appeal court to lift ban on magazine only if offending photo is covered up
28 May - Azerbaijan
Court breaks law by refusing to release journalist on health grounds

5 February 2009 - Bulgaria
“Resignation or resistance, Bulgaria’s embattled press hesitates”
28 January 2009 - Russia
Fact-finding visit : Moscow double murder may have been linked to November attack on local newspaper editor
27 June 2008 - Turkey
Investigation report into the detention of journalist Haci Bogatekin, imprisoned for more than two months and facing ten and a half years in prison

Sign the petitions
Jusuf Ruzimuradov

Europe archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives