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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Press Clampdown, Use of Army in Ukraine Must Stop – Moscow

RIA Novosti

13:52 05/05/2014

MOSCOW, May 5 (RIA Novosti) – The Russian Foreign Ministry said Monday that Ukraine must immediately cease its clampdown on the press, its restrictions on free travel between Russia and Ukraine and the use of military force against civilians.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is to meet with the European Commission's Committee of Ministers Monday and Tuesday to discuss the ongoing crisis in the country.

"The policy being practiced by Kiev of clamping freedom of the press, introducing limitations on movement between Russia and Ukraine, and the use of armed forces against civilians contradict the fundamental norms and principles of the European Commission and must be stopped without delay," the ministry said in a statement.

Recent measures taken by the Ukrainian State Border Guard Service in stepping up security on the border with Russia have resulted in thousands of entry denials.

A number of journalists have disappeared while covering events in the country. Unknown men detained Yuri Leliavski, a reporter for the Ukrainian TV station ZIK, in Slaviansk. A Russian LifeNews television crew, composed of journalist Yulia Shustraya and cameraman Mikhail Pudovkin, was also detained in Donetsk. Some 30 masked people attacked the employees while they were on their way to interview a Ukrainian activist.

Russian President Vladimir Putin's press secretary Dmitry Peskov said last Friday that the Kremlin is concerned about journalists in southeastern Ukraine and that Moscow demands to guarantees for their safety.

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