Afrique Ameriques Asie Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
 
Bulgaria13 November 2008

Former interior minister says “spineless” journalist should be “hit”

Reporters Without Borders is dismayed that former interior minister Rumen Petkov publicly insulted journalist Jurgen Roth and called for violence against him on 11 November, less than a month after Ognyan Stefanov, the editor of the news website Frognews, was seriously injured in a murder attempt.

“We are outraged by Rumen Petkov’s irresponsible comments,” Reporters Without Borders said. “His call for violence was unacceptable and unworthy of a European politician. Does he have to be reminded that less than a month ago, Ognyan Stefanov, had two legs and an arm broken when he was beaten with a hammer and a steel bar, and that it was a miracle he survived. Petkov cannot be unaware of the import of his words in the present context.”

The press freedom organisation added : “We remind Petkov that he has many other ways to debate publicly and democratically with journalists. We urge him to immediately retract his threats against Roth.”

In an article headlined “Hit the slanderer in the mouth” in the 11 November issue of the privately-owned daily 24 Chasa, Petkov said of Roth : “The liar, the slanderer, the spineless swindler must be hit in the mouth, the hands and all parts of his body.” The tirade by Petkov, a parliamentary representative of the ruling Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), was prompted by Roth’s book, “The new Bulgarian demons,” that has just been published in Sofia.

Interviewed the next day for the morning political programme Koritarov Live on Nova TV, Roth said : “No, I am not afraid of Mr. Petkov. Such comments are a good illustration of his intellectual qualities. It is unfortunate that such a man was Bulgaria’s interior minister. We must nor forget that outspoken journalists have been beaten or killed in the past. Such comments sound like an appeal for the same kind of action. It is a disgrace that Mr. Petkov spoke in this manner.”




  In this country
29 September - Bulgaria
Threats against Frognews stepped up. Censored website Opasnite.net reappears on Opasnite.eu
24 September - Bulgaria
Vicious assault on editor of Frog News
15 September - Bulgaria
Security agency closes corruption whistle-blower website
29 May - Bulgaria
Police who allegedly beat news photographer to go unpunished
23 February - Bulgaria
Acid threat against journalist

in the annual report
Bulgaria - Annual Report 2008
Bulgaria - Annual report 2007

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
2 June - Russia
Journalist seeks asylum in Finland after being convicted for prison torture articles
29 May - France
Regrettable decision by appeal court to lift ban on magazine only if offending photo is covered up

Reports
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
archives

Sign the petitions
Uzbekistan
Jusuf Ruzimuradov

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