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30 Jul, 2007 14:19

Terrorism fight should not affect media freedom: OSCE

Russia's law on extremism could restrict free reporting including on the internet, according to a letter sent to the Russian Foreign Minister by the OSCE representative on freedom of media, Miklos Haraszti.

According to the author of the letter, the fight with terrorism should not be extended to gagging the media.

“What we ask for in this letter is to have a better and deeper care about not to extend the fight with terrorism to restrict the right of free speech. Our recommendation would be a clear legally binding definition of what extremism is and based on that definition excluding the possibility of arbitrary restriction of speech right of the media. What we also recommend is to sue with full vigour of the law, of course, any kind of violence, all kinds of violence that are motivated by that are motivated by hatred and also incitement to violence when it comes to speech. But all the rest, I believe, in a democracy should be fought by more words with the force of the public opinion and with the right behavior of the parts of the government,” said Miklos Haraszti, OSCE representative on freedom of media.