VIENNA, 25 July 2013 – OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Dunja Mijatović, today condemned the continued pre-trial detention of investigative journalist, Tomislav Kezarovski in Skopje.
In a recent decision the Skopje Criminal Court extended the pre-trial detention of the journalist for another 30 days. He has already spent 60 days in pre-trial detention since the initial arrest on 28 May, where he was detained in relation to an article he wrote in 2008 for Reporter 92 magazine in which he revealed the identity of a witness in a murder case.
“It is unacceptable that a journalist is detained for his reporting. I already intervened in this case twice in the last month. Today I am particularly alarmed that the court extended his detention by another thirty days,” said Mijatović.
Three days ago, Kezarovski started a hunger strike in protest of his on-going detention. He is reportedly in a poor mental and physical condition as a result of his detention. Civil society and many colleagues of Kezarovski have already voiced their increasing concern for his situation.
“I call on the authorities to listen to these voices of civil society, and I also appeal to Tomislav Kezarovski to end the hunger strike,” Mijatović continued.
“Once again, I emphasise the importance of journalists being allowed to carry out investigative reporting on issues of public interest, free from the threat of imprisonment and without being forced to reveal their sources. I urge the authorities in Skopje to consider this matter as urgent and serious. Kezarovski’s continued detention already has a severe impact on media freedom in the country,” Mijatović concluded.
For the press release on his initial detention please see here: http://www.osce.org/fom/102198