LONDON, United Kingdom – The International Federation of Journalists said on Wednesday, February 22, it had suspended the membership of Russia’s main media trade union after it established branches in areas of Ukraine invaded by Russia.
“The IFJ is an organization built on international solidarity, on principles of cooperation between member unions and respect for the rights of all journalists. The Russian Union of Journalists’ actions in establishing four branches in the annexed Ukrainian territories have clearly shattered this solidarity and sown divisions among sister unions,” IFJ President Dominique Pradalie said in a statement.
The head of the Russian union told state news agency TASS that the move violated the IFJ’s charter and would hurt the world body financially because it would no longer receive substantial membership fees from Russia.
The Brussels-based IFJ, which represents 600,000 journalists in 146 countries, had come under intense pressure from some European members to kick out the Russian union.
Finnish, Norwegian, Danish and Icelandic unions said last month they would quit the global body in protest at what they called “corruptive activity,” including its failure to take action over the creation of Russian union branches in occupied parts of Ukraine.
Pradalie said the IFJ would engage with the four Nordic unions and acknowledged their criticism.
“There are those who say we should have acted faster,” she said, adding that the media federation would urgently seek ways to continue to support independent journalists inside and outside Russia who were at risk or in need of help.
Vladimir Solovyov, head of the Russian union, told TASS the suspension was unwarranted.
“The decision is purely political, they went along with the ultimatum of the Nordic trade unions, unfortunately,” he said, adding that the Russian union had “big plans” for other forms of international cooperation outside the IFJ. – Rappler.com
There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.