Beaten, persecuted, called to public lynch: it is how journalists worked the past year in Macedonia. Those are the conclusions of the Association of Journalists of Macedonia, in its report regarding the freedom of the media and the security of journalists in 2017.
A year ago the European Court of Human Rights had ruled in favor of Macedonian journalists physically removed from parliamentary security during the 2012 budget adoption session: on that occasion, Article 10 and Article 6 of the European Convention on human rights were violated. A year later, the book by Mirjana Lazarova Trajkovska - Macedonian judge within the Court of Strasbourg - focuses on the role played by international law in defining freedom of expression in her country.
Five years have passed since the events of December 2012, when both the opposition representatives and the journalists in the parliamentary hall were removed by the Macedonian police. Without any media coverage and political opposition, the majority approved the country budget for 2013.
The Association of Private Electronic Media “Media lenses” reacted to the possible government subsidy of print media in Macedonia. They have nothing against the financial support for the survival of the daily newspapers, but they wonder why private radio and TV stations are being expelled from that action.
“Life in a Box”, the first book of the Macedonian journalist Tomislav Kezarovski was presented in Skopje. “I could have been silent, but I choose to write”, the author said. In May 2013 Kezarovski had been arrested on the charge that he revealed the identity of a protected witness. The charge relates to an article published in 2008 in the magazine Reporter 92 in which Kezarovski quoted from an internal police report that had been leaked to him. Thanks to international pressures, today he is a free man and “I am Kezharovsky” is the slogan that reunites many politicians, musicians, journalists, activists, writers, young and old.
More than 38 million euros of budget money was spent by the government of Nikola Gruevski for media campaigns and government advertising in the period from 2008 to 2015. It was revealed by the government spokesman Mile Bosnjakovski.
Television is still the main news bulletin for political developments, but the number of citizens who get informed about politics via internet is growing, according to the latest poll of the International Republican Institute (IRI) conducted from 4th to 21st August 2017.
Journalists will be able to receive free information from the Central Registry, but the requests will have to indicate on what kind of research they are working on. It’s what the Director of the Central Registry, Marija Boškovska-Jankovska, told to the journalists national meeting.