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Russia / Chechnya30 November 2006

Temporary arrest of an Austrian Channel journalist and her team : Reporters Without Borders strongly protests

Reporters Without Borders strongly protests against the temporary arrest of the ORF (Austrian public channel) journalist Susanne Scholl and her team in Chechnya as well as the seizure of her footage. “This is an inacceptable attempt of intimidation and a limitation of the freedom of expression vis-a-vis foreign journalists in Russia,” says Rubina Möhring, president of ROG (Reporters Without Borders Austria) and vice-president of RSF Intl.

Although their documents were completely in order, Susanne Scholl and her team have been arrested on the 24th of november in Chechnya. They were interrogated by officers of the Federal Security Service. They were released few hours after. Their video was seized.

After the most recent murders of the outspoken journalist and Chechnya expert Anna Politkovskaya and the responsible editor for economy of the Russian press agency Itar Tass Anatoli Woronin, which are still unsolved, the climate in Russia seems to worsen with respect to foreign journalists.

Susanne Scholl had been working, among others, on a documentary about Anna Politkovskaya which will be broadcasted on the channel 3sat on December the 8th.

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