BBC, VoA included? Hactivists leak Ukraine’s ‘ban guide’ on Russian, intl reporters

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The hacktivist group CyberBerkut says it has obtained for-internal-use-only documents of the Information Policy Ministry, which detail how to pinpoint journalists “involved in anti-Ukrainian information activities.”

“The rigorous research in the document is striking. It’s amusing, but now the presence of a laptop, memory cards, photo cameras and other gadgets in luggage can be grounds for denying entry into Ukraine to anyone. And note that it’s not only for Russian journalists, but foreign journalists in general,” CyberBerkut’s statement says.

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The guidelines apply not only to journalists entering the country, but also give grounds for extradition if the crew is already at the scene, the hacktivists said.

At the same time, it appears some journalists are not welcome at all, as an accreditation black list has allegedly been found. The list also published by CyberBerkut is said to have been compiled by the Ukraine’s Security Service (SBU) and consists of 102 media organizations, mostly the usual Russian suspects. However, such names as the Voice of America and BBC Russian also included.

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Deputy Information Policy Minister Tatyana Popova makes a point that this list is not for media exposure and should never be published, the leak alleges.

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In February, the SBU compiled a list of more than 100 Russian media outlets that are banned from receiving accreditation in Ukraine, RIA Novosti reported. The list included two news agencies – MIA Rossiya Segodnya and TASS – and all Russian federal TV channels.