Thursday, December 20, 2007

Bulgarian journalist attacked, nobody cares

The following quote is from the site of Novinite :
"Dec. 13 - Bulgarian journalists, working in EU member states, have condemned the abuse of their colleagues in Bulgaria in a protest letter sent to the European Commission... "Bulgaria is the only European Union member state, where mercenaries hired by underworld bosses and the authorities are persecuting journalists," the letter reads. It comes shortly after unidentified assaulters beat up a journalist from Monitor daily Assen Yordanov in the Black Sea town of Burgas. The attack has been linked to Yordanov's investigations into illegal deals with attractive property along the Black Sea coast and the vested interests of the ruling Socialist party and its ethnic Turkish junior coalition partner in Strandzha park. It came just days after the journalist revealed his findings in TV interviews. The protest letter tracks back previous attacks on free speech in Bulgaria, including the assault against Emil Ivanov, a photo reporter with the Express newspaper in Sofia, who was hit on the head with truncheons as he tried to take pictures of Mladen Mihalev, one of the most prominent underworld figures in Bulgaria..."
The next quote is from the Dnes site. It is in Bulgarian, so I am translating:
"Dec. 12 - Eight journalists from Telegraf newspaper resigned in solidarity with their colleague from Monitor newspaper Asen Yordanov who on Dec. 10 was severely beaten in the town of Burgas by four masked men. They sent a letter to BGNES agency stating that the publisher of both newspapers, New Bulgarian Media Group, refused to back the assaulted journalist. "This will guarantee the impunity of such attacks against free speech. We know that the same can happen to each of us, therefore we leave The Telegraf," the letter says... New Bulgarian Media Group is owned by Irena Krasteva, former boss of Bulgarian Sport Totalizer. She recently bought the papers Monitor, Telegraf and Politika."

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