Front for Freedom of Expression: Freedom of expression is being imprisoned along with Kezarovski
According to the Front for Freedom of Expression, the 4.5-year prison sentence for journalist Tomislav Kezarovski is yet another heavy blow to the freedom of expression and the freedom of media in the Republic of Macedonia.
The verdict against Kezarovski is actually a threat to all journalists reporting about the work of the police, the judiciary, and all the other state institutions, so they would be more careful in terms of what they are reporting about, and how they are doing it, because they also may be convicted and get a severe penalty, regardless of whether they were reporting the truth or protecting the citizens’ interests.
The Front for freedom of expression requires the higher instance courts to annul this scandalous verdict during the appeal procedure and to free Kezarovski from liability for a crime that he has not committed. Kezarovski was convicted for knowingly conducting the basic journalistic task – informing the public on matters of public interest – as in this case, disclosure of the abuses of the witness protection program by the police and judicial authorities.
Otherwise, the confirmed prison sentence for Kezarovski would simply mean an imprisonment for freedom of expression and media freedom in the country.
The Front for Freedom of Expression (sloboda.kauza.mk) is a wide platform of individuals, organizations, institutions and informal groups that shares a common goal – to preserve and advance the basic human right of freedom of expression, primarily in the Republic of Macedonia, but also all over the world.
The following civic organizations are involved in the Front: the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in the Republic of Macedonia, the Media Development Centre (MDC), Metamorphosis Foundation for Internet and Society, Civil Centre for Freedom, the Foundation Open Society Macedonia (FOSM), the NGO Infocentre, the Coalition “Sexual and Health Rights of Marginalized Communities” – Skopje, the Macedonian Centre for European Training (MCET), the “Javnost” Centre for New Policies and Freedom of the Media, “Jadro” – Association of the Independent Cultural Scene, and Civic Association “Kontrapunkt”.