Media News

Latest news on current media developments in South East Europe

International concerns about threat of prison term against Bulgarian media owner Ivo Prokopiev

Source: Association of European Journalists (AEJ)

The businessman and owner of the Bulgarian media outlets "Dnevnik.bg" and "Capital Weekly" Ivo Prokopiev could be sentenced this Sunday due to a case related to the privatisation of a state-owned power distribution company in 2011. The consequences of the verdict could damage the media freedom in Bulgaria considering the fact that his media outlets are sources of serious ivestigative reporting and examples of quality journalism.

Switched off: North Macedonia’s Media Reforms Fade Away

Source: BalkanInsight

After three years of North Macedonia’s new government under the Social Democrats, pledges to reform the media have been largely delayed. The public service broadcaster, Macedonian Radio and Television, MRT, is also suffering from lack of reforms.

Call for Applications for the EU Investigative Journalism Award in Serbia

Source: BIRN

Applications are being invited for the Serbian part of the EU Investigative Journalism Awards in the Western Balkans and Turkey, which is being administered by the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN Hub) and local partners. Application deadline is June 21, 2020.

Albanian Ombudsman Criticises Police for Violence against Protestors and Detention of Journalists

Source: Exit.al

The Albanian Ombudsman has found a number of concerning issues regarding violence used against protestors of the National Theatre demolition, as well as detention of journalists.

Association of European Journalists Condemns Government-Mandated Shut-Down of Albanian TV Channel

Source: Exit.al

Measures against COVID-19 are heavily violating press freedom in Albania. Last Friday, private radio and TV Ora News has been ordered to shut down and fined 16,000 euros by state health authorities for allegedly not respecting social distancing in its shows. The occasion was that two anchormen who were critical of Prime Minister Edi Rama and his Socialist Party held shows with three people in the studio instead of the maximum two people allowed by lockdown rules. Ora News is one of the leading independent media outlets in Albania.

IJ4EU fund opens new calls for cross-border investigative journalism

Source: SEENPM

The IJ4EU fund opened two new calls for cross-border investigative journalism projects in the EU and EU candidate countries. The deadline for applications is June 14.

Moldova: Media Censorship during State of Emergency

Source: Moldova.org

Media outlets are obliged to present only the official position of the competent public authorities. This is the provision by the Audiovisual Council of the Republic of Moldova. Besides that, the journalists are not allowed to express their opinion on the COVID-19 health issues.

Physical attack on ‘Blic newspaper’ journalists in Mitrovica North

Source: AJK

Two journalists and a cameraman of the Kosovo online portal GazetaBlic have been physically attacked yesterday, while interviewing citizens about the COVID-19 situation in Mitrovica North.

Budget cuts to the Kosovan public broadcaster Radio Television of Kosovo (RTK)

Source: EBU

The Government of Kosovo has cut the funding for the public service broadcaster RTK by 2 million Euro (to 8,960,000 Euro). RTK is operating 4 TV channels, two radios and online media as well. The budget reduction could cause problems in the normal functioning of the broadcaster, inability to pay the journalists' salaries and personnel reduction.

Serbia’s new Media Strategy

Source: European Western Balkans

Serbia’s new Public Information System Strategy (the so-called Media Strategy) aims at, among others, ensuring the independence of the Regulatory Body for Electronic Media (REM), financing public services primarily through fees pay by citizens and increasing transparency of the state’s influence in the media market. While some see the strategy as a basis for further improvements, others look at it with criticism.