Following the recent events in Kazakhstan, OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Teresa Ribeiro expressed her concern about the media freedom situation in the country. She calls for safe working conditions for journalists and other media workers under all circumstances, as well as a restoration of internet access in the country.

Since the violent clashes in Kazakhstan that started a week ago, many national and international journalists and offices of media outlets have come under attack. There were reports about short-term detentions of media workers across the country and foreign correspondents being denied entry to the country. Access to internet in Kazakhstan has been restricted, leaving the population without sufficient information on the events.

“Media are here to inform the public in a free, fair and independent way. This is a vital function in any society. Journalists must therefore be safe to do their work, under all circumstances,” Ribeiro said. “Also, unrestricted access to information, offline and online, represents important elements of public security and should always be respected,” she added. “I call on the authorities of Kazakhstan to preserve, protect and advance media freedom in the country for the benefit and comprehensive security of the country and the OSCE region at large.”

The OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media observes media developments in all 57 OSCE participating States. She provides early warning on violations of freedom of expression and media freedom and promotes full compliance with OSCE media freedom commitments. Learn more at www.osce.org/fom, Twitter: @OSCE_RFoM and on www.facebook.com/osce.rfom.