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Statement by Human Rights Commissioner Bärbel Kofler on the death of Ukrainian journalist Vadim Komarov

20.06.2019 - Press release

Bärbel Kofler, Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office, issued the following statement today (20 June) on the death of Ukrainian journalist Vadim Komarov:

I am very shocked about the death of Ukrainian journalist Vadim Komarov, who succumbed to his injuries last night following an attempt on his life in early May.
In recent years, there has been an increased number of attacks on journalists and civil-society activists, particularly in the Ukrainian provinces.
I call on the new leadership and all political levels in Ukraine to take violence and repression against journalists and activists seriously. I expect the Ukrainian security authorities to fully investigate and follow up on this case and other attacks on members of civil society.
A culture of fear and impunity must not be allowed to exist in Ukraine.    

Background information:

Following an attempt on his life on 4 May, Vadim Komarov died in the night of 19 to 20 June without regaining consciousness. His work focused on corruption in the Cherkasy region. He survived an assassination attempt in 2016 and was attacked in 2017. His case is one of a large number of attacks on civil-society activists in Ukrainian regions that have not yet been solved, such as those on Vadym Makaryuk, Oleg Mikhailik and Kateryna Handzyuk.

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