The Ukrainian military has banned journalists from traveling to the front lines in eastern Ukraine unless they travel in special groups escorted by soldiers, the press service of anti-terrorist operation headquarters said in a statement on Dec. 1.
The statement said the new measure was taken in order to protect journalists and that intelligence indicated Russian-backed separatists were “hunting” Ukrainian journalists. The new restrictions, however, also apply to foreign journalists.
The restriction were immediately condemned by journalists, who said it will hinder their work and endanger them.
New #Ukraine rule that journos must have escorts in east is violation of legislation, intl standards, human rights. Also puts us in danger.
— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) December 1, 2014
Forced Ukrainian escorts will put journalists in danger; make it harder to work; and are pointless, since people can just go through Rostov.
— max seddon (@maxseddon) December 1, 2014
Media rights groups have called the new regulation an illegal attempt to silence journalists.